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Fitness – My Story (Pt. 1)

Last night I had an opportunity to be on Mamavation TV. I feel I don’t do well on camera (yes, Bootcamp was way out of my comfort zone) or when put on the spot with questions and responses. I was just there to be a support and didn’t realize I would be called on to give any more than my opinion on the #2weekchallenge . I am someone who really likes to think through and put thought into my words, or I don’t feel they are conveyed as I intend. I think this is why I enjoy blogging, but also why it is a laborious process for me. I can’t just put my words down, I must also read and modify and re-read and edit them till I really feel I am saying what I intend. Then I have my husband (editor-in-chief of Lumpy to Lean) come in and read it to make sure that I am getting my point across, as well as, fix any overt grammar errors. Last night’s show was about fitness, but I feel that I forgot that message when the questions came and my words didn’t give the sense of how important fitness is to me. For me, fitness has been an underlying part of my Journey to lose the weight that I have already lost.  While it is true that the bulk of the weight actually started to actually come off once I figured out my eating and made huge changes there, the journey all began with fitness/exercise and, without that underlying foundation, I would not be where I am.


My original ID Photo circa 2009

I started over 6 years ago by joining a gym. I went regularly for over 6 months without actually making much change other than trying to move more. I had done exercise programs before throughout the years but would stop when life got in the way or I just lacked the motivation. I was at the gym multiple times a week, so why was the weight not falling off? I was getting quite frustrated. Mind you my workouts were half-hearted at best.  I was extremely overweight and I was doing little more than climbing on an elliptical and barely breaking a sweat (even though the machine told me I was burning  500-700 cal for effort). The problem is I thought the machine was giving me a workout. I was there, and I went 60 minutes like a rat on the wheel. It’s no wonder that I dreaded the time, and I wasn’t losing the weight I wanted or needed to lose.

It was just about 5 years ago (Sept 2009) that I signed up for a “Biggest Loser” type of class at my local gym.  That program included trainers that would work with us once a week. We’d weigh in, talk about weight loss and, most of all, we would work out “Bootcamp Style”. It was then and there that I realized what was happening in the gym:  simply jumping on the elliptical and sweating a bit was not doing anything for me. I learned that in order to really succeed that I needed to put in much more effort in my workouts.  My trainers (Rick & Deb) were terrific. They would push me and push me to keep going (not anything like what you see on the TV show, nowhere near that much drama at least). But they knew better what my body was capable of than I did at that point.  It is true that only I know my body’s limitations, but they could see my potential. It was at this point that my body began to actually change.

Although I still didn’t have all the pieces and was actually missing some key components,  I was on my way finally and the journey had truly begun. It was at this point that I started going to the gym almost daily (4-6 days a week) and while the weight still wasn’t coming off as fast as I truly wanted, I was making huge steps toward where I am today. I was creating fitness habits that would last a lifetime, and — most importantly for making the habits last, I was finally enjoying the work to get where I am. I often now refer to myself as a “gym rat” as it is my home away from home, and I am truly enjoy being there  (at least most days). I know that I don’t need a gym to work out. I do and have done many workouts at home when time and circumstances don’t allow me to get into the gym. Many people do it without the gym at all, but for me it is a routine it is a consistent piece of my day where I can focus on fitness and working toward a stronger me.

Feb 2014 Mid Workout

Feb 2014 Mid Workout

I just recently completed a Personal Trainer Certification program and now am officially a card carrying member of the fitness community. I ask myself all the time what I now want to do with this training and where I want to go with this. My answer is always the same. I want to help others do what I have done. Do I want to follow people around at the gym, seeking clients? No, I want to inspire others to push themselves and to reach their potential within. I want to show others that they are capable of so much more. I want to encourage people to keep pushing forward and not give up because while it seems to be insurmountable, it truly isn’t. I want to show other women that the weight room isn’t a scary place, and they have as much as right to be there as the guys slinging around 100lb dumbbells. This is why my focus is here. I believe I can do that much more effectively by example and by encouraging my readers and myself as I push myself further.

A few things I have learned from losing over 100lbs

It May Not be EasyIt is Definitely Worth

It is still quite unusual for me to think about having lost over 100lbs. It is like a huge barrier that I have finally cleared, but I can’t think how it ever was before. I want to write more about the journey itself and share with you the entire story, but I haven’t yet come up with all the words needed to do so. So, I thought I would give you a few of the biggest realizations I have had during the process.

1. What works for one person does not work for everyone. There are hundreds of methods to lose weight. It is a billion-dollar big business for a reason. Almost all of the people out there who lost a lot of weight (100 lbs. or more) are quick to tell you their method and try to sell you a way or product that is “sure to work.” Well, I am sure it does/did work for someone. We have all spent way too much money trying to lose weight. There are products out there that may or may not help you along the way. The only method that will work for you is one you are committed to and will stay with, no matter what. This is why, for me, it has been real food and exercise. I have grown to love working out, and I have no problem continuing to do so. I change up the types of exercises because I want to do so many I have to choose from time to time. 

2. I had to be willing to change. Losing weight changes you. We can think, “I am still the same person,” and, yes, we are, but if we don’t change our mindset, the weight will come back. To lose this much weight, I had to change the way I think about food, about my body, and often about my life.  I have read many stories about people who lose friends and people they are close to, or even divorce a spouse, after a huge weight loss. It is because they have changed who they are and how they think about everything. This is why it is important to bring those close to you along with you. You can grow and change together.

3. It is a hard process. Anyone who says it was easy for them, I applaud and congratulate. It is not impossible, but it is not easy. It takes much dedication and hard work to get there. There are days you just want to give in and give up. You have to keep from doing so. There were many days I didn’t want to go to the gym or I just wanted to go gorge myself on ice cream and say phooey on the whole thing. It is completely OK and normal to feel like this, but it is what you DO that matters. Do not give in, keep plugging through, and if you do give in for a time (skipping workouts, chowing down a pint of ice cream or a 1/2-pound chocolate bar, etc.), don’t beat yourself up for it. Just move past it, leave it in the past, and move forward, committed to your newer better way of living.

4. It can take a very long time. Do not stop short of the goal, even it may take longer than you think. You may get side-tracked for a while (I know that I did), but if you keep sight of the goal, you will get there. I am not the most patient person. It has taken me 5 years to get this far and I am not done yet. I know now that I will get to my goal, and I will not stop working when I do. This is a life-long process and 5 years is nothing when I stop to think about the next 50 years to come, if the Lord is willing to let me stay that long. 

5.We need help along the way. It is OK to ask for help when we need it. What we need at one point may be completely different than what we need at another point along the journey. Seeking others who can lift us up and help to keep us on track whatever we may need at the time is a positive thing. You never know what life-long friends you might find along the way as well. 

These are just a few of the things I have learned on this journey. Is there something you have learned during your own journey? I hope to share more things I have learned in the months to come as I continue forward toward my ultimate goal. 


Finding Your Rhythm?

more calm less stressWhen I first started thinking about this post, I had so many different thoughts and ideas that I wasn’t sure how I was going to tie them all together. As my friend @ruethemomof would say we all can dance. Well, this girl has two left feet, but that doesn’t stop me from shaking my stuff from time to time … in the solace of my own home and only in front of my children and away from all windows. Even that often ends with the my toddler screaming for me to stop (see it really is that bad). However, it isn’t that kind rhythm that I am talking about. I am talking about our bodies’ weight-loss rhythm. We all have a distinct and personal rhythm, and while it can change from time to time, it is definitely something to pay attention to. 

We like to think that weight-loss is all about the numbers.  Wouldn’t it be wonderful if it was as simple as X (calories in) -Y (calories burned) = Z (fat lost)?  Well, after years and years of doing this, I have found it is never that simple. There is that complicated component called metabolism, and then there are the rates at which different types of foods are broken down and processed for energy first . This means there is just so much more that goes into it than just calories. It isn’t as simple as “calories in” and “calories burned” at all.  For anyone who has counted calories and hit a plateau, that math often just does not work. Yes, eating fewer calories and burning more calories will lead to weight-loss, but how much and how it comes off is never a simple equation. There are hundreds of people who will tell you more than 1000 different ways to do this, each swearing that his/her method is the best and ultimately the perfect way to lose weight. Of course they are all trying to sell their method/book/supplement. And while many may work for some or for a short time no one has the right answer for you but you. 

When comes to weight loss rhythm, you can only find yours by watching what happens with your body and how specific foods and exercise change the outcome. To do this, you must record your food and exercise and watch what happens to your weight and body shape over time. It is only through observation that you will see how this happens for you. Too many times people don’t have the patience for this process. When we are working hard, we expect to see immediate results.  When we don’t get the expected results, then we get depressed and frustrated and give up before allowing our bodies time to respond the way they should. The truth is weight-loss is a very personal journey. Yours is different than mine. You can take two people and feed them the same foods, have them do the exact same workouts, and yet they would each lose weight at a different rate. There are just too many other factors that are involved in the process. Sometimes people lose 2lbs a week, other times they don’t lose at all, but they drop clothes sizes and inches like crazy. Other times, they may go weeks without a change then suddenly lose multiple pounds. How your body responds is completely personal.

 My own weight-loss rhythm has changed dramatically in recent months. I am working out much differently than I had in the past. I am approaching nearer and nearer to my goal. I am lifting weights and training very hard right now. This leads to a very different weight-loss rhythm than what I was experiencing before. Right now, it is taking me about three weeks before I show a loss at all, then it is a sudden drop of 2-3lbs.  I admit this is hard to take, working my tush off for 3 weeks and not having the scale move is tedious, frustrating, and depressing. Even when I know the drop should come, it is hard not to fear that it won’t happen and worry that I am hitting that dreaded plateau yet again. So, what is the answer? Should I avoid the scale for those 3 weeks? I think not, because I don’t want not to record and measure, for fear that something may go wrong and I won’t catch it in time. So, I still get on that scale, and I still see the numbers not change and even though I know that a change will come eventually, it is very difficult not to become frustrated and discouraged. 

Monday’s Mamavation TV show was about finding your calm and ending the negative self talk. It is difficult to stay positive and avoid giving into the negative self talk when frustrated because the scale doesn’t move as it should.  For me, a big part of this journey that I didn’t anticipate and have had to learn along the way is to understand that this process is not predictable. My body is doing things that it never has before. The simple math of calories in/out does not provide predictable real-world results for me (or many others too, especially after  some significant weight-loss).  So, I am having to learn to manage my frustration and negative self talk by watching how my body responds to food, exercise, and monthly cycles.  It’s not easy to keep that in perspective.  But, as I am learning and am able to think things through by talking them out here and with others, I am becoming more able (I hope) to keep things in perspective, to avoid becoming unduly depressed and discouraged when the scale doesn’t move for days, or even weeks.  It’s not easy to resist those emotions and the stress of not seeing change when I’m working so hard, but I appreciate those of you who are willing to listen, to offer encouragement and advice, and to share this journey of learning with me.  

If you haven’t yet found your weight-loss rhythm give it time. Plan a month to record everything, all your food, exercises, measurements and weight. Take pictures and focus on your journey. At the end you will see the difference and hopefully have further insight into your own rhythm. Do you already do this and know how your body responds? Realize it may change at some point so always be prepared to re-evaluate. This journey takes time and commitment, never give up because you aren’t seeing the changes fast enough. They will come with time. Sometimes it may even take years to fully realize your potential. I am living proof of that persistence will pay off.  Weight Rhythm Chart

Mamavation Bootcamp Journey

Mamavation MondayWell the Mamavation Bootcamp Campaign ended last week. It was 8 weeks of exercise plans, diet plans, and massive information leading to a detox from foods, and removing products containing pesticides and chemicals from use in our homes. I have spent each week learning about a new area where we have to be cautious about the chemicals that we are exposed to without even realizing it. The chemicals are sprayed on our food through pesticides, a variety of chemicals in our shampoo and thousands of other products can be hidden and labeled under one ingredient like “fragrance”. Many of these personal care or cleaning products don’t even label what is inside. How can you trust anything that doesn’t tell you what is in it?

The biggest change I have made is to question everything. There are tools out there than can help you. We should  have a right to know what we are using. We cannot trust the companies or the government or anyone else to keep these things safe. We as the consumers need to research and be aware of exactly what these products are and demand safe products for our families. If we do not ask for these items, they will not be provided. There are more and more great choices out there each day and we are seeing huge companies finally paying attention and making changes because we continue to ask for them. 

After 8 weeks of someone telling me what to eat, how to exercise and what to consider, this week I was on my own. Well, not entirely on my own:  I now have two wonderful new friends (@CarrigansJoy and @pirate1013)who are with me and continuing to encourage and help me keep on track. But I still had to decide what my new plan was, and how I wanted to proceed toward my final goal.  I have a very ambitious workout plan in place for March. I have started a Kettlebell swing challenge where I do 300 swings a day, 5 days a week, for the entire month. I have a 3-day strength training workout and am still trying to get my 10,000 steps, cardio, and even running when I can. Basically I am working out in some form or fashion 6 days a week. I am not currently making any changes to my diet plan. I am going to try and keep that consistent, as I really enjoy eating real wholesome food. I am trying to plan better and avoid the mindless or random snacking that seemed to plague me last week. By planning out each meal and my snacks, I hope I can keep myself in check better.  I am still logging my food, but I have to know that even though no one is checking on me now, the benefit of logging comes by keeping myself in check.

My weight was up 2lbs this week putting me at 193lbs. I didn’t try as hard to get the number to cooperate as I did during the campaign. I now know my pattern has been to gain/struggle for a couple of weeks then to drop so I am not worried about the increase. I know I am doing what is right and keeping going.  I have been told it is the weight-training that has changed my loss pattern. Since I am super please with my progress and can see the muscle I am building I know I am doing it right. 

How was your week? Tell me how I can encourage you this week!! Check out my Sistas tonight at the Slumber Party!Slumber party



Tips for Success

Apple and measuring tape

Well today is a big day and I am trying to keep my mind busy and hurry it along to the fun part tonight. Since they posted this blog topic I have been trying to narrow down my tips for success. I’ve been doing this a long time and have lost a lot of weight so far so I do consider myself as having success. Maybe not entirely to my goal yet but I know I will get there.

These are my best tips for anyone just starting out on their own journey.

1. Start Today! Don’t wait till the junk is gone from the kitchen. Don’t wait till next week. Each moment you are making a choice, and with each bite you take you are either closer to or farther from your goal. It is the biggest step you will take. Get moving, and you are started. If there are temptations in the house, remove them and start now.

2. Get Determined! It is hard to have confidence in something that seems so daunting as losing 100lbs. Don’t think of it as that huge amount: break it down and just tell yourself you will lose 5 or 10 pounds to start with, in a certain realistic number of weeks. Set your mind on the goal, and go after it. So many people say they have no motivation, but although motivation and excitement is great, it isn’t the motivation that takes you to your goal, it is the determination that keeps you moving toward it even when the excitement and motivation are lacking (Which can happen a lot. I am speaking from much experience.).

3. Don’t try to do everything at once! Pick a focus or healthy habit to implement and work till you have a good handle on it then move on to add the next healthy habit without dropping the ones you have already embraced. Building healthy habits one at a time will keep you from getting overwhelmed in the beginning.

4. Seek help! Having a partner in the process will make a huge difference. An accountability partner or a community like Mamavation or even a friend to work out with will help to keep you going. Working with someone will give you someone to talk to when temptation strikes, and a support network of this type makes a huge difference.

5. Stay positive! Remember you are worth it and YOU CAN DO THIS! Don’t let the negative talk into your head. Weight-loss is about so much more than physical activity. It’s about healthy eating, healthy living, healthy mental attitude, and exercising for a healthy body. You have to love yourself to want to change for a healthier you.

Talk to me! I want to help you get where you want to be. What kinds of things can I post about that would help you on your journey? Let’s do this together.




Bootcamp Finalist!


I am so excited to be a Mamavation Bootcamp Finalist. What does that mean? Well, it means I still have a chance at one of the three spots for Mamavation Mom in Campaign 18. But it also means there is a chance I won’t be a Mamavation Mom in this campaign. What it really means is that I got to participate in one more week of crazy workouts or “hazing” as it is fondly referred to as.   It’s been cold here (I mean really, really cold, the don’t stick your nose out of the house kind of sub-zero cold) and the baby has been sick and we just haven’t left the house, so I have been really sluggish. If it wasn’t for my monthly challenge and hazing I would be sitting here not doing a thing.  I needed the push. So I have just made the best out of this week of “Tag-Team” hazing. You see, now it isn’t just @bookieboo doing it. She has invited @mrbookieboo, @waytogomom, and @lydsrich to help break us. The kicker is no complaining or they pile it on heavier too. So keep positive ladies, and  lets finish this week strong.  Join us on Twitter Monday to see who the lucky 3 Campaign Moms are!

I am so glad to have Jody, Toni, Wendy, and Elizabeth working along side of me. It’s been a really fun week and, while we won’t all be chosen on Monday, we can enjoy the ride. Even if not selected, I will be moving directly into the #2weekchallenge and will be thrilled for the girls who are selected. I have enjoyed them so much and getting to know them has been just wonderful. This community has been a huge motivation to me. All the ladies here (and @mrbookieboo too) help to inspire and keep me learning constantly. Thank you Sistas for all you do and keep pushing!

Here’s my Mamavation Application Video in case you missed it. You can go out to Mamavation on facebook or tweet to Leah @bookieboo and tell her how you would enjoy watching me go through this campaign. I am excited for this opportunity. I am looking forward to the possibility of sharing all that I learn with you. I need this detox and hopefully It will give me the push toward that final weight-loss goal or who knows perhaps it will take me there. Thank you all for your continued support! 


Gym Time

GymTime2_jpg_January has arrived and with it comes everyone wanting to lose weight and get in shape for the new year pouring into the gym. This includes all the people who bought their memberships last year and haven’t used them, as well as all the others who are just signing up for the first time. Already you see it at the gym, and with the New Year beginning in the middle of the week Monday is sure to really kick off the gym rush. I love my gym it’s like a 2nd home to me. It’s part of my local park district, so I have not only been going there to work out, it is where my kids take classes, swim lessons, and a number of other community-centered activities take place.  At the gym in January, many people can get bent out of shape (pun intended) due to the change in their environment.  I wanted to write up a few tips to get us through this busy time at our home away from home, including things for the seasoned gym rats and also for all the newbies coming in.

To those who are seasoned veterans and have been there day in and day out for the entire year.

  •  Remember you were once here too. We all have to start where we are.
  • Be nice to those who are just coming in the gym. Remember the anxiety of doing something completely new and how intimidating it can be.
  • Be patient with those who are new. They are learning how to use the equipment, what the rules are and where to put things when finished. 
  • Smile and offer some assistance. Be welcoming and encouraging. You never know if what you say or do may help someone make a real commitment.
  • Get out of that rut. Your favorite treadmill is taken? Maybe it is time to try something new. Give the weights a try or what about that neglected rowing machine (it might be the best cardio workout you can get!)
  • Hang tight and go with the flow. This too shall pass. Come April the crowds will be a distant memory, and the few people who stick around may become your good friends, may learn from you, and may even teach you a thing or two. 

To those who are new. Remember a few common courtesies and you will be much better received in this new environment: 

  • Adhere to gym policies on equipment. Most gyms have a 30 minute limit on cardio equipment during a busy time. Even if your gym doesn’t have a limit when the machines are full, think about others who are there to work too and move on to another machine after 30 minutes.
  • Do not rest on the machine after a set. Wipe it down and move aside or to a different machine then return to finish when you have recovered.
  • If you must answer the phone do so quickly and quietly. Getting on the treadmill and talking on the phone nonstop for 30 minutes is annoying to everyone around you. No one wants to hear your conversation. 
  • Put equipment back where it belongs.  This means rack your weights! Your mom does not work at the gym, (or even if she does others shouldn’t have to clean up after you). Even if the last guy didn’t do this, and you had to go looking for an item, put it away when you’re done.
  • Wipe down the equipment when you are finished. Whether it is a treadmill or a bench press, if you were on it, wipe it down. No one else wants to sit in your sweat, nor do they want that virus that your kid has or that ran through your family last week.
  • Remember no one is watching you. No matter how self-conscious you are, no one is looking at you. If you are doing what you are supposed to and using the equipment correctly, no one is judging you. 
  • Remember others are there to work too, be considerate of their time. Most people want to get in and get their workout done and on with the day. You will find some like to chat and such, but for the most part everyone is doing their own thing.
  • Take advantage of the trainers’ introduction if available. Having a trainer show you how to use the equipment will help you move more quickly through your workout. 

johnjim funny

Following these simple practices, we can all get along and share the space that is our favorite gym. Respecting others and being patient will go a long way to keep peace in the environment. I personally love seeing all the new people at there. I hope each of them find what works for them and continues on their path to health. It is a hard journey and I wish you all the best in getting to your goals. 

Do you work out at the gym? Will you be starting for the first time? How do you like to pass the time while there? Reading? TV? Tunes? Or chatting with a friend?


January ’14 Squat Challenge

keep calm squat deepHave you ever noticed that there are so many different names and ways to do squats? I was thinking about this recently and I would like to do a month of squats: All different kinds of squats! The task will be to do 100 squats daily. However, they won’t all be your standard squats. We will pay tribute to many of the variations and try squats in all kinds of new ways.

The basic squat technique:

Always keep your back straight, shoulders back, chest and head up, and sit back into your squats. Your knees should never extend forward over your toes. It is best to work on form rather than endurance. Ten well-executed squats will do much more for you than 100 poorly formed ones that end up killing your knees.  Squats are more difficult the lower you go, if you are just starting out do what you can, but if you are more advanced Squat deep! 

 Here is a list of the squats I have chosen to learn/focus on this month. Weight can be added to each at your own level if you would like.

Basic (also called Air Squats) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_fb6Kz7FQg
Jump Squats – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4s4mEQ5VqU
Goblet Squats – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z9_8AmtBTlU
Side to Side Squat https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mRzSLDqP1s8
Frog Squat https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxhWS59Fvb8
Plie Squat (also called Sumo Squats) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNKVK2axeNI

 This workout was created for my own use to challenge myself with something new each month. I share it with you hoping you will find it enjoyable and for your benefit, too. Always workout at your own pace and listen to your body.  If you would like a nice printable PDF file, try here.

2014 Jan squats JPG_



Dee’s Plans and Goals 2014

goalsThis is my third year sharing my plans and goals with you here, friends. This truly helps me to stay accountable and on task throughout the year. While I don’t like putting off starting things for the new year and while it isn’t the only time it is good to do so, I find that at the beginning of each new year we are given a new opportunity to reflect and consider our dreams , plans and goals. It is a time after the holiday rush to slow down for a couple of days to reflect on the past year and consider the possibilities for a new year. I was once told that, as living creatures, if we are not growing and changing we are dying. As I get older I like to think that I am still growing and becoming more wise and helpful to those who come behind me rather than just waiting for my end to come so I can start a new beginning. 

I know that there is a lot of debating about whether you should make resolutions, set new year goals or create systems and put actions into place.  I believe once we resolve to do something, we should start immediately. I believe it will get stuck if we put it off to begin another day. Also, I see the point that goals are a way for many people, once a goal is met, just to say, “Ok, I did that, and now I can return to what I was doing before;” if that is the case, what was the point of setting/doing the goal other than a “yeah, I did that (uh… once).” What works for me is a little of all these things. I am constantly resolving to change behaviors to make myself better than I was the day before. These changes help me to achieve the goals I have set.  Having SMART goals so that I can check up on myself throughout the year is a good way to gauge my progress and make sure that I am continuing to push forward rather than returning to my old habits and processes. Putting into place systems and refining the processes I have keeps me on track and moving to a better things. 

So, for 2014, I have several things I want to focus on, and I have identified goals and processes that follow along with each.

1. To Be Stronger – I have started weight training, and I love it. I have always been a strong woman, but I want to be stronger. My goal is to continue to weight train and lift twice a week throughout the new year to accomplish this.  My current weight lifting numbers are Bench 80lbs, Overhead 70lbs, Squat 105lbs , Deadlift 175lbs. I am new enough to lifting that I don’t have a specific max target yet, but I definitely want to improve/increase my strength, and I may set more specific timed goals.  

2. To Be Faster – I want to continue working on being able to “Run” a 5k. I will participate in multiple opportunities throughout the year via live and virtual runs. Each week I plan to push myself on the “dreadmill” to run and work on this at least 2 days a week.

3. To Be Smarter – This year I would like to learn more about exercise mechanics and anatomy. I plan to study and sit for a physical training certification. This is not because I want to get a job in the field, and I do not even plan to do so. This is because I want more knowledge to be able to use it in my own training, to understand how my body is (and should be) working, and to help others through this blog.

4. To Be Leaner – I want to meet my ultimate weight-loss goal of 170lbs. I am 30lbs away from this goal and believe that this year I can accomplish this, if I work hard toward it. 

5. To Be Wiser –  I want to understand what is in my food and make choices that are in line with my goals.  The Mamavation community is a huge help with this. There are so many things we eat without understanding what they do to our bodies. I want to become more aware of the content of food I eat and feed my family, and to make informed decisions that sort through the hype (both “for” and “against” different foods).  

6. To Be Healthier –  I want to understand my health better and do all I can to improve it. I commit to care for my family the best way possible with their (and my) spiritual training, food, and activities. 

Are you setting goals for the New Year? What types of goals do you like to set? How do you like to keep track and check the progress of your goals throughout the year?

Many of you may know that I have applied to be a Mamavation Mom for the new campaign. You can watch my application video here or view it below and Tweet in support of my candidacy { support Dee’s campaign by tweeting “@Bookieboo I want @lumpytoleandee to be the next#mamavation mom!”  }. I would love to be selected as I know they would really help me get a jump start on my goals, but if I am not chosen, I know these goals will help me keep me on track.  Thank you for your support and encouragement.  



(all images used here are believed to be in the public domain and/or subject to fair use in keeping with the small, educational nature of this site)

November Workout Challenge – Turkey Toner


I know I am running late, but promise I didn’t forget about a November challenge. Things are just moving too quickly for me this fall, here already November is upon us and that means holidays, parties, and, of course, bustling around from one activity to the next.  For November, I would like to focus on toning the legs that carry us from one activity to the next.  For those just joining in, I like to do a monthly challenge workout that you can do without going to the gym.  When I think of leg workouts, I think of my friend Kerry and her killer leg routine  from group classes I took at  the gym. We would do 100’s of them it seemed. 

In honor of Thanksgiving this month the routine will be a Turkey Toner – Legs and Thighs.

My goal is to do 2-3 sets each of these in succession. Do as many as you feel comfortable doing for your own fitness level and workout time allowed.

Side-Lying Leg Lifts – Watch how here.

  • Up/Down – See Video. No need to go all the way up and down. Keep leg muscles engaged and go about 1/2 way up.
  • Circles – Point toe and draw small circle forward and then backward for the same count as #of reps
  • Pulse – Flex foot, extend up 1/2 way and pulse for same count as # of reps
  • Hold – Flex foot, extend 1/2 way and hold for same count as # of reps

Inner Thigh Lifts –  Watch how here 

  • Up/Down – See Video,  Top Leg bent w/ foot on floor. Up and down with bottom leg as can extend
  • Circles – Point toe and draw small circle forward then backward for same count as # of reps
  • Pulse – Lift and give it a small pulse for same count as # of reps
  • Hold – Lift and hold for same count as # of reps

Sumo Squats – Watch how here.  

  • Up/Down – See Video. Legs wider than shoulder width feet pointed out, back straight and sink down. Careful to keep knees in alignment.
  • Pulse – Sink as low as can and give it a little pulse same count as # of reps
  • Hold – Sink down one last time and Hold it for same count as # of reps

This month I want to make sure we don’t forget about that core we have worked so hard on, so here are a couple of bonus ab moves for a more complete workout.

Bonus Ab Series:

  • Bicycle Crunches – Same Rep Count as leg moves 
  • Plank – Hold as long as possible. Increase time slowly throughout month.
  • Side Plank – Hold as long as possible. Increase time slowly throughout the month.

November Turkey Toner hi_image

Comment below and let me know you are doing the Turkey Toner Challenge with me this month. I’d love to hear from you! You can find a printable .pdf version here.