Thursday, December 22, 2011

Facebook Group and Other News!

I wanted to post my Facebook group link for those of you who would like daily encouragement!

Homefront Warriors

It's my little group that is just getting off the ground. I love to post there during the day and see how everyone is doing and what people are struggling with!

Okay, so big news! is going to do a little article featuring me! This site is awesome, if you haven't been there yet, go! What are you waiting for?! They have healthy recipes, workout guides, and real mom advice on healthy living. I love reading the articles there and seeing what their daily workout challenge is on their Facebook page. So I have some big questions to answer for this article. I'm a little nervous to be completely honest! But I'm super excited! It will be up in Jan or Feb and I cannot wait to see it! I'm truly honored and blessed for the opportunity to reach out to more women and encourage them in their journey.

Much love, and hope to see you in my group soon! '

Mandy (AKA, Harper Girl)  <--my domain name! ha!

PS, look who showed up in my mailbox today :)

It's Bob's new workout! I will post a review of this amazing workout! This is supposed to be his toughest, and it's been rated pretty tough! I can't wait to work up a sweat with Bob's new workout!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

I am a Runner

Beware, lots of old flash backs and real honesty in this post. I like to keep things honest about my weight loss and life, even if the entire world reads it.

Who likes to run? Correction, who actually runs? I don't know of anyone who actually ENJOYS the act of running, myself included, running is just something I feel compelled to do (despite my new running jacket!)

Don't mind my no make-up look. I was heading out the door for my weekend run. I run typically once a week right now. I started running to prevent my body from plateauing. I remember the first time I tried running after I had my second baby, Jacob. I was a good 180lbs. We had just bought a double jogging stroller so we could begin a walking/jogging routine as a family. I couldn't jog more than 100 feet without panting or having sharp pains in my knees. I wanted to cry! I was so out of shape. After losing about 50lbs though I decided to try running again and I did amazingly better. My knees didn't hurt anymore, and I ran more than half a mile before I had to stop. I felt better about myself knowing that my body could do that. You see, running has always been my biggest weakness. I remember gym class at school (yeah, I'm going that far back) and I was never picked for the teams because I was no good at any sport other than volleyball. Anything that required running was a no-go for me. Remember running laps around the gym with the class? I was always last. I was the pudgy girl walking at the end. Running has never been my thing, which is what sort-of fueled the idea for me. They way I see it, if your body has a hard time doing something then you're doing something right when you exercise! Bob Harper always preaches to try new things, that the burn is good, and we have to go beyond what we think our limit is. So I picked up running again January of 2011.

In January, I was back to my comfortable, normal weight of about 135lbs. The weight I've been nearly my entire teenage and adult life. About a size 10. Not obese, but not healthy either. Right in the middle. For some reason, that is where I either get too lazy to keep going because my old pants fit again, or I just plateau out and can't seem to get over that hump into the 120's. Running and Bob Harper changed all of that for me. With a new mindset and determination I started running 1.5 miles around base housing in North Carolina. I started out half walking, half jogging. I could hear Bob in my head over my ear buds telling me to push harder, don't look at the people staring in the cars (psh, they just think I'm hot anyways! Holla!), back straight, head up, run run run....

My run time the first time around, for 1.5 miles, was.....45 minutes. Unacceptable. But, damn it, I did it. I didn't stop. I kept running and running until I got better and better. I wanted to be "a runner" because it was hard. I like feeling the wind in my face, the sun on my body, and my feet hitting the pavement. It was my weekly date with the road. I got to forget all those things to do at the house, all the mommy stuff, the laundry, the cleaning. For an hour, I was a runner just doing my thing.

Today, 11 months later, I have a 9-minute mile. I just started running up to 5K. It took me a long time, but I trained myself! I completed a 5K run today in 35 minutes, which is outstanding for someone like me who isn't a hardcore runner. It's not a amazing time, I know, but it's my own personal best, and I am damn proud of it. Next week, I'll push harder and try to beat it.

I challenge you all to look at yourselves and your workouts and see what you think is scary or hard for you. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I could complete a 5K or be a runner, but here I am. Conquer your fears, your body will thank you! Plus, it's a sure way to help beat the plateaus!

Until next week!

Today's Tip: Need a little motivational boost? Music! I just got an iphone, early Christmas gift from the hubby, and downloaded a new workout playlist! My new favorite workout song (other than Usher...ahem, ERsher's "Yeah!") is "Fighter" by the great Christina. Plus I got that sweet running jacket to help me fight the "it's too cold to go running" blues. Seriously, google workout playlists and you'll find hundreds of really great songs to either run or workout at home to. I put on a playlist every time I workout, even if I'm zoning out. It helps me focus, and my workouts are so "blah" without it! Mix it up! If you'd like a list of my favorite workout music, leave me a comment! I'll post a bunch that I persoanlly love!

Much love and Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Is Fear Holding You Back?

Sometimes the only thing keeping us from being happy is ourselves. I've talked to many people who are just beginning their journey and the most common thing I hear from them is that they are afraid. They are afraid of their diet not working, that the exercise program will be too difficult, or that they won't be able to be consistent. Many times, I've seen people give up all together because they are too afraid.

Let me tell you all a secret; I still deal with fear. It's a different kind of fear, now that I've lost the weight, but still fear that could put me back to where I was before. I am afraid of the person I've become. Once I lost the weight, I was this new person. A person that for the last 26 years I never was. I had to rediscover myself and find out who I really was, and who I have always tried to be! Sometimes I still see myself as that 210lb girl, scared of everyone and everything. That kind of fear and thinking would out myself right back to where I started; back to eating my emotions and binge-eating. Back to my food addiction. Back down that downward spiral.

Fear is always there, but what matters is how we deal with it. I was afraid at the beginning too. I had an issue with plateaus in the past. So I was afraid every week of stepping on the scale and seeing what my number would be. This time around though, I never had a plateau on the scale. I consistently lost every week, and have yet to gain any back. I can write another post on how I avoided that, but the point is that I dealt with the problem head-on through research and action.

Don't let your own fears hold you back from starting your journey! I understand the fear, I really do. But you have to tackle the fear head on! Work through it, breathe through it, and remember to always love yourself. Fear won't get you to the size you want, it'll just keep you where you are!

Today's Tip: The holidays can be a bummer for girls watching their calories! I wont' lie, I've had my fair share of Christmas cookies already this year! If you can budget them in, do it! Just don't overdo it. That will lead to weight gain. Try sipping low-calorie hot chocolate or pumpkin spice tea at night (or when a cookie craving strikes!).

PS-Just ordered Bob's newest workout! I'll have it by the end of the month, and I promise to write a review for it!!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Planning & Schelules

I'd like to address all of the questions I received on my last post!

When I committed myself to losing the weight I knew it wasn't going to be easy. Not just because losing weight in general is hard, but extra tough because I had a 3 year old and newborn on my hands! How was I going to get through a workout with the boys around all day? Well, nap time was my friend. I put my newborn down for a nap and hit the weights. I trained my 3 year old to play quietly by himself in an area where I could supervise him. At first it was awful, but he learned how to entertain himself. Now that I have an 18 month old and 4 year old, it's still not easy. I work out for a full hour several times a week, then shower and get ready for the day during my youngest's nap time. My 4 year old likes to work out with me now! Can't argue with that. It's hard, seriously hard. I sleep in my workout clothes so I'm already to go in the mornings. There have been times where I've watched my friends' kids, and I couldn't have that mid-morning workout. Now what? I got my behind up at 5am to workout for an hour. I hated it, I hated every minute of it, but I hated myself more if I didn't do it. You MAKE time to work out. If it means losing sleep, so be it. Can't go out with friends? Oh well. It's your health at risk here. You have to set priorities. If I can do it, I know you can! Wake up early, go to bed late, or go to the gym on your lunch break if you work full time. I never stepped 1 foot inside of a gym, I've used nothing but Bob Harpers workout DVDs since day 1, and I like it that way! The gym isn't for me, but others love it. Whatever gets you moving!

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Protien shakes. Oh, what a touchy Subject for me. Okay, I don't mean to offend anyone, ANYONE, with what I'm about to write. I do not buy expensive meal replacement shakes...and here's why; you can make homemade ones a heck of a lot cheaper! Seriously. I drink my own mix, which is Greek yogurt, no-fat milk, protien powder I get online or at the store for $10, some fruit, ice, and Splenda. It's delish, healthy, and I have them as a mid-morning snack. I won't replace meals with them, because eventually you'll have to start eating meals again and you want to teach yourself how to eat correctly. This is why I also don't recommend nutrisystem for eating. You have to teach yourself better eating habits, and you won't find that with nutrisystem. I taught myself how to cook healthy. It's a lifestyle, not a diet. It's a lifelong commitment to your health and the health of your family! What I do recommend is weight watchers online! I've been a member for years, and I love it! It teaches you to cook, gives you endless recipes and lots of people are there to support you.

Remember, when you get to the finish line, you strt a much longer race; maintaing. Maintaing is where I am, and I'll tell you's just as hard or harder than losing weight. You don't get tho little "highs" anymore from losing a pound, and you have to be careful of not getting back into old habits. I still workout 6 days a week. I still calorie count. I still weigh myself daily to stay on track. Like I said, lifelong commitment to fitness! When you are losing weight and learning how to prepare your food and meals, it is all preparation for maitanence mode! I cannot stress that enough.

Tip of the day: the first step is the hardest. I know, I've been there. I was at rock bottom when I started. I had to crawl my way back up. Workouts actually kept me from getting depressed! Did you know that when you workout it actually boosts your mood? It does! Endorphins people!! So lace up those sneakers and hit the play button on that DVD! You're only 1 workout away from a better mood, and a better bod ;)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Topic Suggestions!

Well hello to all of my new followers! Pinterest has made me a mini celeb on the fitness boards, and now I have lots of new people following my little blog :)

So my question to all of you is....what would you like me to write about? I'll create a post based on what you all are struggling with. Holiday eating? Healthy lunches? Nw workouts? Kettle bells?

Suggest a topic! Comment below ;)


Blog design by Rainy Day