"I'm a Jesus Girl who can step on the scale and simply see an indication of how much my body weighs - not the worth of who I am!" Lysa Terkheurst

On July 9th I had Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass surgery and this is my journey! I want to be clear that I DO NOT think this surgery is a quick-fix for weightloss and every possible means should be taken before even considering this path. It is VERY difficult and if I knew then what I know now, I would have done more to lose the weight on my own! Having said that, I'm thankful for my new healthier life and am accepting and taking charge of MY weightloss journey! And... ALL the glory and honour goes to GOD!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

One Year Surgiversary!

Happy Surgiversary to me!!!  Today is one year since I had Roux-En-Y surgery.  I lost 1.5 lbs in the past month so that's a total of 150lbs!  I feel like a new person.  I love being able to run around with the kids, be more active, cross my legs, and wear clothes that actually makes me feel like a woman.  I was blessed today to be able spend the day at The Calgary Stampede with my two sisters and our husbands.  I'm not going to say a lot today, only THANK YOU for all the support.  I could not have made it through this year without your support.

To celebrate, my brother-in-law, Jeremy treated me to a ride on the biggest ride at the Stampede.  There is NO WAY I would have been able to do this a year ago.  Thank you Jeremy for helping me realize a dream I've had for most of my life!  I missed out on so many rides and special things because of my weight.  I hope I never have to miss out on life again due to being overweight!

Here are some pictures to celebrate the day!

Total Loss: 150lbs!!!!!

Sunday, June 9, 2013


Since the Color Run I've lost 3 lbs.  Not much to report.  We're heading to Alberta next month.  That should be fun - driving across the country with three kids!  But we'll see all of our sisters and cousins - can't wait!

Total Loss: 148.5

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy 5K Mother's Day!

Well, it's been a while!  Sorry about that!  I haven't had much going on to blog about until this past weekend.  Yesterday I accomplished something I only dreamed about a year ago.  I did my first 5K run!  It was The Color Run in Michigan.  I had a blast with my friends.  I'm glad we did a fun run for my first one so that there wasn't so much pressure to reach a certain time or anything like that.  I woke up yesterday morning with a bad chest cold and was nervous about being able to breathe while running.  So I ran as much as I could and then my chest would tighten up due to the cold.  So I would briskly walk until my chest loosened up and then I'd BOOT it again.  It was an awesome day and even though 5K is not a huge run, it's cool that a year ago, I could not even walk to my mailbox because of all the aches and pain in my back and heavy breathing.  This year I did a 5K race!  Here is a visual to point out how much my physical abilities have changed this year.  In the first picture, point A is my house and point B is the mailbox.   The second picture is the race route I did yesterday!
Here are some more pictures from the run yesterday:
 Considering I was about to do something that was completely foreign to me, I was pretty happy!

Me and my running buddies!

Some of the 15,000 people in the race!

Just a few people!

Me and Barb after finishing our 5K!
It certainly did feel good!

 Our friend Becca made our tutus!   

Me lookin' all beautiful at the after party!

 Here we are holding up our friend Sherry's shirt.  She was diagnosed with Stage 3 Breast Cancer just after signing up for this race and wasn't able to attend due to her aggressive chemo treatment.  But she was with us in spirit!

We love you, Sherry!

YAY!!!  Here I am walking backwards towards the finish line.
What a great sense of accomplishment!

And this is me at home, just before getting in the shower then the bath! haha

I realized during this run that I am NOT a runner.  I don't mind walking - actually, I enjoy it even!  But my knees hurt when I run and with the extra skin I have due to the quick weightloss, it makes running hard.  But I'm not going to stop doing it.  Just don't expect to see me running the Boston Marathon any time soon! haha

Well since it's mother's day, I wanted to take this time to give my mom a tribute.  My mom has been my best friend my whole life.  She is one of the most giving and caring people I know.  Yes, I'll admit that I didn't always feel this way... while growing up, especially as a teen and young adult, I thought she was in my face too much and didn't trust me to be out late with my friends.  Now, as a mother, I realize it was because she cared and was worried about me.  My mother has been one of my biggest supporters during this weightloss journey.  She even started her own weightloss journey and has lost almost 50lbs! I'm so proud of her!!!

I want to apologize to you, Mom, for all the disagreements we had while you lived in here in Windsor.  I was often quite harsh with you because you drove me crazy telling me to clean my house more, wash the kids face more, keep up on the laundry, etc.  But you were right... I didn't do these things as much as was needed.  And the reason is because I was too big to function.  Seriously, just getting off the couch to get a facecloth to wash the kids' face was a big chore.  I couldn't clean my house.  I couldn't go up and down the stairs to do the laundry.  Mom, you put up a lot with me over these years.  And I often took out all my anger about my weight on you, without even knowing it.  Mom, I'm sorry that you had to put up with the worst of me.  I'm so sorry that you're not here to enjoy the best of me, the healthy me, the one that would have the house all clean and laundry done BEFORE you got here!  And the one that would love to go for walks with you and be active with you!  I dedicate my first 5K and my new active life to you on this Mother's Day.  You are an amazing mother.  I love you SO MUCH and am so proud to have you as my Mommy!

The past month has seen me become A LOT more active.  I ride my bike to the gym, we ride bikes to school when the weather is suitable, and if we need to go the mall, we ride bikes there too!  I am trying to instil in the kids that riding bikes, walking and other physical activities are fun!!!  I never want them to look at it as exercise or a chore.  I try not to ever say the "D" word - diet!  I want good health and fitness in our vocabulary!!!

So this past Thursday marked 10 months since I had my surgery.  Here is the updated picture of my monthly progress (I'm posting every second month because the picture is too long to post every month).

Since the last time I posted, I've lost 2lbs for a total of 145.5.  The weightloss is slowing down considerably now but that's to be expected.  I am able to eat more now.  And I HOPE I'm gaining muscle mass.  I LOVE weight lifting and could pass by the cardio all the time... but I don't.  I know I need that too!

Thanks for following my journey, friends!  And thank You, God, for giving me the strength every day to make my body as healthy as I can!

Total Loss: 145.5lbs

Tuesday, April 30, 2013


I will write a full blog soon but for now I just wanted to update my weightloss for the past two weeks.  It's all slowing down according to the numbers on the scale but I'm seeing a difference in my clothing so I know I'm losing inches. Anyway, I lost .5 lbs this week for a total of 143.5.  I'm happy with that! :)

Total loss: 143.5lbs

Monday, April 15, 2013

Do Whacha Gotta Do!

Last Wednesday our baby boy, Roman, had surgery to have his tonsils and adenoids removed. It was heart breaking to see him in so much pain.  But I have to share a special moment that I will remember for a long time.  First of all, let me backtrack to last year when Michael had to have surgery to get tubes in his ears. I remember the whole day just being so troublesome because I was so uncomfortable in my own body.  I remember trying to sit in the chair next to his bed and try to get as close to him as I could. It was so difficult because I couldn't even fit in the chair properly and I was too big to lean into the bed, therefore not being able to comfort him as I so badly wanted to.  Well this year at the hospital, as Roman recovered from his surgery I was able to actually get in the bed with him and cuddle with him and bring my child the much needed comfort and cuddles he needed and deserved from his Mommy.  It was such a huge blessing!  Sometimes I get a feeling of guilt come over me that Gabrielle didn't get to experience the healthier me when she was younger but I quickly try to refocus and be grateful for the amazing future we get to enjoy together (Lord willing!)  Here is a picture of me with Michael in the hospital last year, and one of me and Roman this year:

Last week I only made it to the gym one day because of Roman's surgery.  I was too exhausted to get up Thursday and Friday at 5:30am to go to the gym after keeping an eye on him all night.  But I realized that there are so many things we can do around the house to workout and keep fit.  I am blessed to own a Wii Fit but I know not everyone has one of those.  One night last week after the kids were in bed, I took out the Wii Fit, put the balance board on my step aerobics "step" and did a free step for 30 minutes while watching one of my recorded shows from that week. I also held on to my 5lb hand weights while doing the steps and did a bunch of lifts with them while stepping.  It was intense!  My arms were killing me after and the next day my calves were killing me.  It hurt to walk.  It's weird because I do the treadmill and bike at the gym every time I go, but obviously steps use a different muscle that I had not been working out before.  It felt "good" to be in so much "pain" though! haha  The next night I took out my exercise mat and did a bunch of push-ups, sit ups and again used my hand weights for some other core exercises.  If you have stairs in your house, you can go up and down them a few times, stopping on each one to do leg extensions (stand on the edge of the stairs on your tippy toe and go up and down).  Or jump up each step with both legs at the same time.  If you have toddlers, pick them up and raise them above your head - they LOVE it and you get a work out!  And then there's the good, old fashioned WALKING!  With the nice weather coming now, there's no reason to not get outside and be active!  Even if you're over 300lbs, just moving will help you lose weight.  I know that this might sound like the pot calling the kettle black, but I really wish I had tried harder to get moving outside when I was at my heaviest.  It doesn't take a lot to get the calories burning when you are at such a high weight, but I always had an excuse.  Some of them were valid excuses like severe back pain.  But there comes a time when you need to push through it.  It's just a matter of doing what ya gotta do!  This spring and summer, I plan to do as much outdoor activities with my family as possible.  It's not only healthy physically, but it builds strong family bonds and creates memories for a lifetime!

Today was a gorgeous day. I decided to take Roman for a short bike ride to a park a couple blocks away. My bike wasn't working properly so I walked while he rode his.  It was so nice to reflect back to last summer when walking was a lot easier after having lost 40lbs and then to think how today walking is so much easier than even last summer with now over 140lbs gone.  I'm so excited about all of the activities I will be able to do with my family this summer with this new, healthier body.  In one month I will be doing my first 5K race.  I'm really looking forward to it!  I'm also hoping to sign up for a couple more 5 or 10k races that the kids can do with me.  They love running and think it's cool to do it with Mommy!

Well this past week I lost 1lb for a total loss of 143lbs.  I'm still hoping to lose a total of 159-165lbs by the time we go to Alberta in July.  It's doable - just gotta stay focused!

I took my monthly picture a couple of days late, but better late than never!  Actually, Gabrielle took them for me!  So here is my monthly progress picture.  It was getting too long to post every single month so here is every second month from August on...

Before signing off, I want to give a shout out to my sister and brother-in-law who just completed a 9-week challenge in fitness.  They did fabulous and look fantastic!  Here is the link to her blog if you'd like to see the results! http://sculptureofstrength.blogspot.ca/2013/04/the-stats-are-in.html

Have a great week everyone and stay active!

Total loss: 143lbs

Sunday, April 7, 2013


Well, let's see... I feel like I have so much to talk about.  It's been 3 weeks since I last blogged.  Not a lot has happened in those three weeks in regards to activity in my life, but a lot has happened in my mind.  Back in October I decided to stop being so argumentative on Facebook and other social media sites.  I decided not to post anything else about politics or hot topics with my opinions (I caved a couple of times, but not too badly).  Anyone who knows me knows my positions anyway.  I took it a step further and decided to stop watching the news or reading about it.  Life has been pretty peaceful since then!  Looking back at my days as political/religious ambassador on Facebook, I realized that I did a lot of that to make up for something I was lacking.  I still don't even know what that something is.  It's not confidence.  It's not self esteem.  It's not self worth.  I really don't know.  But whatever it was, I sure don't need it!  Someone posted this picture on FB recently and it really hit me.

I spent so much time arguing my points about why so-and-so is right or wrong and it was a waste of time.  Instead I need to talk about what I love.  I love God, my husband, my children, my family, my friends and good health.  Really, outside of that, there's not much to talk about!  So you WILL see me continue to post about my love for these, unashamedly.  And I would encourage you to do the same!  It's SOOOOO freeing!

Gabrielle (my 8 year old daughter) said something last week that sums up what this whole weightloss journey has been about.  She said to me "Mommy, I'm so glad you lost all this weight."  I asked her why, really hoping she would not say because "you're prettier" or "you dress cooler".  She said "because now you can run around with us and play outside with us and do lots of fun things with us!"  DING DING DING - Right answer!!!!  She gets it!  This is about health and living life!  I really try to not use the D word around the house (diet).  I talk about healthy foods, fitness, etc.  And the kids are really catching on to it.  I just want them to be healthy and active.  And they LOVE being active with Mommy and Daddy!

I took a big leap in my journey to better health last week - mentally.  As you will know if you have read my previous blogs, I lost a lot of hair after the surgery, which is common.  Since my hair was thin before surgery, I was behind the game to start.  Well last Tuesday at our monthly Weightloss Surgery Support Group meeting, I spoke to the group about my hair-loss and how it was a really big concern for me because I was so embarrassed by it.  I recently had my haircut because the thinness was getting to me and I needed a haircut and color that would make it look a bit thicker.  Up until this most recent haircut I would do anything possible to hide the baldness - wear hats, spray my scalp with a dark brown hairspray so it didn't look bald, put it up, whatever I could think of.  But something LIBERATING happened when I got it cut.  I no longer care about people seeing my scalp or thinking "wow, she's bald!"  I am HEALTHY!  I'd rather be healthy and bald than unhealthy and have a beautiful head of hair.  So guess what I did?!  I showed the whole group (which is a pretty big group - over 100 people) my head!  I leaned over, pulled my hair apart and showed them my scalp.  I felt like I had to do it to let go of that "pain".  My hair has always been something I loved putting time into but not so much the past few years since it got thin.  Showing everyone my head was so freeing!  And to bring that freeing to another level, I'm going to share with you all a picture of my head when the hair-loss was at it's worse.  Be prepared!

 Ahhhh!  That feels good!  I don't have to hide it anymore!  And as much as I'd love to have long beautiful gorgeous curls, if this is my lot in life, I'll take it!  My hairdresser did say that she noticed a lot of regrowth so maybe it will come back thicker than before.  But if it doesn't, it's all good!  Here is a picture of my new do:

Well I hit my second stall.  I lost 1.5 lbs the first couple of days after my last blog but since then I didn't lose any weight until this past week.  The scale started moving again last week and I lost another 2lbs for a total of  3.5 lbs which brings my total weightloss to 142lbs.  Two Sundays ago, I got a picture of my friend Laurie on my back.  She told me that I have lost a whole HER!  I seriously CAN NOT believe that's how much weight I was carrying around.  I'm not surprised I was so miserable physically!  Thanks for the visual, Laurie!!!

To end off, I want to encourage you if you're struggling with weightloss or your journey to better health.  It gets really hard at times.  I SO know that.  But remember, the failure only happens when you give up.  It doesn't happen if you didn't lose as much as you expected or if you even gained a pound or two.  It ends the moment you stop trying!  It is SO EASY to just stop and convince yourself that you're happy with what you've accomplished and that you don't NEED to lose any more.  But until you've reached the goal that's healthy for you, DON'T QUIT!!!  BELIEVE IN YOURSELF!  Look at yourself in the mirror (I'm serious here) and say "I am worth it.  I am worth fighting for!  I am blessed and I want those blessings in my life to experience a healthier, happier me!"  I'm serious - talking out loud to yourself is REALLY helpful.  You tend to hear yourself more when it's said out loud as opposed to in your mind.  And if there's anything I can do to help you, I'm always here!!!  Be blessed!

Total Loss: 142lbs

Sunday, March 17, 2013


Well I don't have much to talk about this week.  But I do want to thank all of you who sent me words of encouragement and support through Email and Facebook after my blog last week.  It meant so much to me.  It's nice to know my journey is helping so many others in their journey to better health.  If I can help anyone in any way, please let me know.  I want to my success to be the success of others!

I was actually going to skip doing a blog this week because I didn't want to sit down at the desk and type one out (I know - lazy!)  So I thought "hmmm... I have a laptop... why don't I just sit on my couch and type my blog."  And you know what!?!?  I'm actually using my laptop as a LAPtop!  I have never been able to sit down and type on my computer with it on my lap.  I've always had to put it on a table or stool in front of me.  This is kinda cool!!! haha

So this week I went to Value Village and bought some tops for spring (although I'm not sure when spring is actually going to show up!)   It's really nice to not have to go to the XXXL sizes anymore.  Who am I kidding... at my highest weight I was wearing 5XL.  Buying clothes is also cheaper.  Bigger sizes are more expensive.  The stores they come from are more expensive.  And yesterday I went to Walmart and I could actually browse the clothes in the regular sizes.  I won't buy anything there yet because I don't want to pay full price for anything while I'm still losing weight.  That's why Value Village has become my new favourite store!  These are two of my new buys at VV this week.  (sorry about the goofy smile - Gabrielle told me to smile bigger!)

After I took these pictures this afternoon, I got scissor happy and cut about 3-4 inches off my hair.  I'm planning on getting it cut really short in a couple of weeks with a new color, so this was just a step in that direction.  But it needed to be done.  All the ends of my hair are so thin from the hair loss so I thought that by  cutting it, it might APPEAR thicker.  We'll see.  I might still get the razor out!  :P

This post has sounded very much like the weightloss is all about outward appearance, but that is not the case.  This past week at work I had to install a computer in an office.  My co-worker mentioned that getting down on the floor and bending over desks, etc would have been so hard before the weightloss.  She was so right!  I told her that I wouldn't have been able to do my last job at Target if I still had all the weight on because I wouldn't have been able to get around the equipment that I needed to. It is so much easier to manoeuvre around "life" with all this weight off.  I still have a ways to go to reach my goal, but even at this point, life is just so much more, hmmmm, I don't even know what the word is!  I can't say happier because I was a very happy person before.  I can't say more confident, because I was a confident person before.  I can't say more fulfilling because I've had everything I need in life to fulfil me for years now!  But maybe I can just say it's more ENJOYABLE because I don't have the physical pain holding me back any more and am able to do so much more!

So this week I didn't have substantial weightloss, which is okay.  I haven't been able to workout because I've been too busy working full time in the day and teaching music in the evenings.  And I'm also eating more, which is a good thing.  The doctor told me at my last appointment that I should start trying to eat more.  I am able to eat quite a bit now (relatively speaking, of course) so I am having to put all my mental preparation into practice now.  Make wise food choices.  Don't eat more than I need to.  Drink lots of water.  Having said all of that, I lost half a pound this week. Up until now I have been rounding up or down my weightloss each week.  But I will be counting all the partial pounds from this point on.  So my total weightloss to date is 138.5.

Have a great week everyone.  And remember that if you fall, just get back up and don't look back.  You only fail if you quit trying!

Total Loss: 138.5bs

Sunday, March 10, 2013

A Visit to Onderland with Sandi!

Well, I haven't blogged for a couple of weeks.  Not because there was nothing to blog about, but mostly because I've been so busy and too exhausted to sit down and formulate my thoughts over the past three weeks.  Much has happened.  And of course the main one being I MET SANDI PATTY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You might be able to tell that I am a little excited by that!  I have listened to her sing for 30 years and always dreamed about meeting her someday, to thank her for her profound influence on my musical career.  Well, on March 2nd at approximately 4:22pm (I'm not that much of a stalker, I just have the time stamp from the photo!) I met the only person in this world who I have wanted to meet more than anyone else.  It was everything I dreamed of!  I had sent her an email a week before the concert telling her how excited I was about meeting her and finally being able to see her in concert.  I also shared my weightloss journey with her because she has gone through her own weightloss journey.  Well 4 days before the concert, she emailed me back, thanking me for sharing my journey with her and for the kind words.  So when I met her, I introduced myself as Dayna, the one who emailed her the other day, and she gave me a hug and said "Oh Dayna, I'm so proud of you - what a huge accomplishment!"  She actually read my email!  We talked for a bit and then it was time for the second half of the concert.  After the concert was over, I went to speak with her again and got some more pictures taken.  She is so down to earth and I was amazed how how friendly and accommodating she was to everyone who wanted to speak to her.  She is so sweet!  So here are some pictures of that day...
 Daddy and Michael waiting for the concert to begin
Gabrielle and Roman waiting for the concert to begin
 Sandi singing the Nation Anthem (and I'm bawling my head off, knowing that I'm 20 feet away from Sandi Patty!)
 That girl can SANG!!!

 Here she is singing How Great Thou Art
 Me and the lady with THE VOICE!
 My new favorite picture of all time!

The kids with Sandi 
 Me and Larnelle Harris - another amazing singer and person!
 My children with Sandi's youngest daughter, Aly
Me in my new outfit for the concert.  I even managed to keep my 4 inch heels on all day!

Well, it seems as though Sandi brought more than just the joy of meeting her to my life that week.  I reached a milestone in my weightloss that I have been so excited to reach.  Let me preface this by saying that I was always going to wait to share with the world what my starting weight was until I reached this goal.  Now that I've reached it, I'm kind of nervous to share it, but it will keep me accountable... and besides - the number on the scale is just that - A NUMBER!  It certainly doesn't define how healthy I now am and how much more I am enjoying life!!! Anyway, so this milestone that I reached is ONEDERLAND!  For those of you who watch Biggest Loser, you'll know what that is.  It's when someone reaches the number o
n the scale that starts with a "1".  Well if you do the math, you will realize that my starting weight was 334.  I know - shocking!  I can't believe I ever allowed myself to get to that size.  But I did. And it's over-with now!  I'm not dwelling on it!  This past week I lost another 3 lbs for a total loss of 138lbs.  I weigh 196lbs now.  Yes, that is still a lot and I know I still have a ways to go.  But I am cherishing that 196 with all I've got! This ALSO means I am now the same weight as I was when I graduated High School.  I remember trying so hard before my grad to lose weight because I felt like an elephant.  Now that "elephant" feels like a superstar!  It's all about perspective!  When the clinic asked me what my goal was, I told them I'd be happy at 200lbs.  They said they wanted me to get down to 150 so they agreed that we would compromise and set 175 as my goal weight.  Now that I'm in Onederland, my goal is around 160.  I'm hoping to reach 170 by July when we go to Alberta, but if I don't reach it, it's totally okay - I already know I will be able to do SO MUCH more on vacation with my family than I ever would have 138lbs ago!  

I am so happy with the success and again, thankful to God for bringing me through this journey safely and successfully.  I'm also so thankful for all my friends and family who have stood beside me all the way.  I could not have done it without your support.  And especially my kids and husband.  Stelios has really been my biggest cheerleader these past few months and he makes me feel like the most beautiful and sexy woman on earth.  Thank you babe!

So it's my monthly photo week.  Here are my monthly update pictures.

We were encouraged to keep our biggest part of pants to remind us on our "I Feel Fat" days of how far we've come.  I wasn't having an "I Feel Fat" day today, but just thought I'd try them on.  These are the jeans I last wore in April of last year - and even then I could barely do them up.  Wow!

That's it for this week!  Sorry it was so long - but I had a lot to fill you in on!  I will try my best to blog again at least every Sunday.  I have to admit - I've been wondering if anyone is even reading anymore, and if not, that's okay - this is for my records of my journey too.  But if you still read this, please let me know so that I know if I should post more or less.  And if there's something you want to know more about, feel free to ask!    Have a super week!!!

Total Loss: 138lbs

Sunday, March 3, 2013


I lost 1lb this week for a total of 135lbs

Total Loss: 135lbs

Sunday, February 24, 2013


I lost 2lbs this week for a total of 134lbs.

Total Loss: 134lbs

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Watch out Kurt Browning!

This has been a great week in regards to my weightloss journey.  Not because I had a huge weightloss but because I am starting to feel good in my own skin!  I had a huge milestone this week.  Let me preface a bit... When I was in university I went on a retreat with the Salvation Army Students' Fellowship.  A few of us were playing football on the frozen pond.  I ran to get the ball (no skates on - just boots) and I ended up slipping, feet went straight up and I landed on my head.  I got a really bad concussion.  Ever since then, I have been SO AFRAID of the ice.  I freak out even if I slip a little bit in a parking lot or driveway.  I haven't skated since high school, mainly because of the fear created by this event at the retreat.  Well, Michael was invited to a skating birthday party yesterday and I decided I would take him and actually skate too.  He had never been skating and I wanted him to not be afraid of it.  So I laced up and brought him out, pretending I knew what I was doing! haha  He did great.  He fell down a lot but he laughed every time and we had a lot of laughs together!  I managed to stay on my feet the whole time.  I was surprised by that!  I know that a lot of the bravery came from the weightloss.  7 months ago I never would have attempted to skate.  I would have declined the invitation to this party, therefore making my son miss out on some great fun, all because of my weight.  My weight kept me from A LOT of things.  If I knew I would have to walk a lot of stairs, walk a far distance, or do anything physical, I would decline the invite.  Even last summer... the kids were in soccer at a church that has many soccer fields behind their building.  We went to a few games and ended up not going anymore.  I couldn't even walk from the parking lot to the field without excruciating pain.  I remember getting back to the van after the games and just crying my head off because of the pain in my back and legs.  I convinced myself and Stelios and the kids that they weren't enjoying it well enough to continue through the season, but in reality it was my weight that stopped them from continuing.  I feel so ashamed with I think about it.  But thankfully I'm on the road to making sure my weight never stops me or my family from doing anything we want to do!  Amazing adventures await us!!!

I start a new job this coming week. It's a temporary job for a month or 2.  I'm kinda nervous about fitting in my workout time.  I can't do early mornings - I'm not a morning person!  It looks like I'll have to go in the evenings after the kids are in bed.  I don't want to miss any of my time with them after I get home from work.  This is real life!  This will show my dedication.... (and I won't say "or lack thereof!"  oops, just did!) 

Well I really don't have much more to talk about this week.  Like I said, the skating this past week, the toboganning last week - these are the most exciting NSVs for me. (Non Scale Victories)  But as always, the scale tells a number that helps us determine if we're heading in the right direction.  And thankfully the scale is still moving in the right direction.  I lost 2lbs this week for a total of 132lbs lost.  I'm hoping to reach a big milestone this week which I will reveal next week if it happens.  My next milestone is to have another 37lbs gone by July 9th, which will be my one year anniversary of surgery.  It is getting harder to lose large numbers now, but I will be okay if I don't reach that goal.  I may not lose much more weight in regards to the scale number if I continue with the weightlifting routines I'm doing.  And that's totally okay.  I am going to focus more on the size of clothes I'm wearing and the measurements because muscle weighs more than fat and I want to become more toned.  Either way - I'm going to continue on the right path and do whatever I can to be more and more healthy every day!

Total Loss: 132lbs

Sunday, February 10, 2013

New Life!

I think it finally hit me this week how much my life has changed since losing all this weight.  I don't mean materially but emotionally and physically!  I am able to do things now that I couldn't do 7 months ago or even 3 months ago.  I am LOVING the activities I can now do with my family and how much energy I have.  It feels so good!

This past week I stepped out of my comfort zone at the gym and decided to do some machines that I always shied away from.  I never thought I would ever be able to do the step machine.

I got on it and thought to myself, I'll do it for a minute, just to see how brutal it is.  Well I got on it, and lasted 5 minutes.  Now, some of you might think that's not a big deal, but for me, it's huge.  I have major knee issues so I've always avoided stairs or anything that felt like climbing them.  This was actually an enjoyable machine to use and I look forward to doing more of it!

Another machine that I've always avoided was the rowing machine.  The main reason for avoiding this machine is because my stomach was always in the way.  I didn't even try it because I knew it would push my stomach and chest up into my neck and would just be too hard.  Well I conquered it this week and really enjoyed it!

I've also started using more Ab machines.  This is my biggest problem area and unfortunately, I've been putting it off the most.

I actually really like these machines.  It KILLS like crazy while I'm doing it but feels SO GOOD afterwards.

And finally, my favorite new exercising tool is the medicine ball!  There are so many different exercises you can do with it to tone different muscle groups.  I was watching The Biggest Loser this week and seeing how they hardly ever use weight machines on that show.  They use stuff like ropes, tires, medicine balls, etc to do their work outs.  So I thought it was time to change it up and bit.  And I'm LOVING it!

All of the work I've done at the gym in the past few months has led me to yesterday. I was able to do something I haven't done since Jr. High.  I went SLIDING with the kids and Stelios.  It was SO MUCH fun! I was able to run up and down the hill without getting out of breath and my back and legs didn't hurt AT ALL!  Most of, my kids had smiles on their faces the whole time and I believe it was in large part because I was not just a spectator but an active participant!  I laid in bed last night and had a moment of guilt that I waited so long to lose the weight that prevented me from doing so much with my family.  But then I "smacked" myself and realized that I have done it now and that it's not too late to participate in life!  My kids are still young and thankfully they now have an active mother to enjoy life with!
 Getting ready for my first trip down the hill!
 SO much fun!  WEEEEEEE!!
 Look at the smile on his face!  Pure joy!
 I even have a lap now for Roman to sit on while sliding!
 Me and Gabrielle could both fit on the krazy karpet for a fun ride!
 Peace!  And while I'm at it, I'll do 50 push-ups! hahaha
Cuddle time with my baby!

I have a funny NSV (Non Scale Victory) this week.  When I was in Jr. High school, I was at my best friend, Nicole's house.  Well, she wasn't my best friend then - more like arch-enemy   But that's another story!  haha Anyway, I remember being in her living room and she said "Look at how my mom crosses her legs.  I hope I can cross my legs like that some day."  Her mom, Melita, had her legs crossed normally and then had her foot tucked in around her leg a second time.  Ever since that day, I've always wished I could do that as well. Well this week I was lying down in bed and I tried it, and it worked!  It is obviously easier doing it lying down than sitting in chair, but I'll be able to do it sitting in a chair someday soon!!!

Well this week I lost some more weight!  I was thinking I wouldn't lose much because I am doing A LOT of weight lifting.  But I guess I'm doing enough cardio too to account for the muscle gain.  I lost 3 lbs this week to bring my total to 130lbs down altogether!  One of my peeps, Hannah, told me that she weighs a bit less than 130 but with all the clothes, boots and scarf she had on today, she was probably more like 130lbs.  So I got a picture of her on my back.  I then proceeded to walk around the auditorium for a bit with her on my back.  I CAN'T believe I've lost the equivalent of a Hannah!  It was HARD walking around with her on my back (no offence  Hannah!)  How did I do it for all those years.  It makes me sad in one breath but very grateful in the next.  Thanks for the visual reminder today, Hannah, of how much I've lost!

So yesterday was 7 months since I had surgery.  Here is my monthly photo update.  Crazy!  I'm still shocked at how fast it has all happened but ever so grateful!  And as always, I give God the glory for helping me through this journey and for granting me great health!

Total Loss: 130lbs