Sunday, August 28, 2016

And I'm back!

Dear blog reader(s),

I don't know how long I'll be back, nor do I make any promises about how often I'm going to start posting, but I finally feel like writing here again.

Thanks for the patience, any of you still following this blog that hasn't been updated since February.  I appreciate your support more than you know.

Today's post will likely mostly be life updates.  Because there are quite a few of them to report.  I haven't been just sitting around these last few months.  I've been making some major life changes.

In February, March, April, May, and June, I did mostly just sit around and get sadder and fatter.  I was feeling pretty hopeless and gave into my depression and my eating disorder.  I felt stuck.

Then in July, I decided to completely change my life.  A generous cousin offered me a way out, and I took it.

I left Stacey and Tennessee behind and moved to Las Vegas last week.  I also decided to leave my binge eating and sedentary lifestyle behind in Tennessee as well.

Stacey and I were together for 8 and a half years.  Things fell apart slowly over time, and I've been unhappy for awhile, but I tried to keep things together because of the longevity of the relationship, and also because I didn't feel I had the means to make it on my own at the time.  I'll keep the rest of the details about the breakup private for now.  We are still on good terms, and are hopeful to remain friends.

I've been wanting to leave Tennessee for a long time.  It's just not where I wanted to live.  I've felt trapped there.  I'm grateful for the University of Memphis, and I'm happy that I lived so close to Mom during what turned out to be the last four years of her life, but other than that, I have no attachment to the place.  I will probably go back sometimes to visit family, but will never live there again.  I'm thrilled to be out of "the South".

I'm currently job hunting, and it's going well.  There are a lot of great job opportunities here.  I'm hopeful and confident that I'll find something good soon.

I am so much happier already.  I drove here from Nashville all on my own, making me feel confident about my ability to survive without a significant other.  I highly recommend starting a break up with a long solo road trip (even though it was also a loooooooooong trip and a pain in the butt, especially pulling a trailer the whole way!).

I'm working on an all over healthier lifestyle now that I've left both a place and relationship that weren't good for me.

I'm no longer content just sitting around all day long, and have been making an effort to get some activity in every day, including going to the gym, doing laps at the pool, and even hiking at the beautiful Red Rock Canyon here in Las Vegas.

I'm also working hard at my diet.  I now live  right across the street from a Trader Joes, and I keep my fridge and pantry stocked full of healthy options.  I love TJs so much it's ridiculous.  So many healthy options and for not that much money.

I would love to lose about 150 pounds ultimately, but I'm taking it one day at a time.  I did lose 4 pounds my first week here, just by being active and not overeating.  There is definitely some vanity going on with this weight loss this time around.  I'm not going to lie and say it's all about becoming healthy.

There are so many thin and beautiful people out here!  I've been out in crowds several times now and I think that maybe 1 out of every 100 people are obese here, so I'm in the extreme minority and I'm feeling pretty gross and fat... but I'm working on it, and I do realize that it's not the most important thing in the world.

I'm looking forward to seeing what's next in my life, and hope very much that it's a great job offer!

By the way, my dogs are doing great, too.  :-)

That's all for today I think.  Thanks again for reading, and I will try to be a better blogger.  <3

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Marathon training! The loooooooooooong way...

I decided a long time ago that I'd like to run a marathon some day.  Then I broke my leg, succumbed more than ever to my binge eating disorder, and became more sedentary than perhaps ever before in my life.

Now I'm in the beginning stages of losing the 100 grief pounds and reclaiming a healthy life.

I still have the goal of running in a marathon.  But.

I have to do this is stages.  It may take 2 or 3 years of training before I get there.  This won't be a "12 weeks to running a marathon!" plan.  I don't know yet how long it will take me. (much like my weight loss plan)

Because I am starting from a very sedentary and out-of-shape place in my life.

I figured out a few weeks ago that the first step would be to be able to walk for 45 minutes.  I came up with this number because that used to be my average 5K time.  So I figure that it's a good walking goal to reach for.

The first step is an 8 week walking schedule.

During these 8 weeks, I will go from not moving much at all (outside of regular tasks, like walking to  and from my car and doing housework) to being able to walk at a moderate pace for 45 minutes straight.  I will get on my treadmill and walk every other day during this time.

Week one:  20 minutes on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday
Week two: 25 minutes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday
Week three: 30 minutes on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday
Week four: 30 minutes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday
Week five: 35 minutes on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday
Week six: 40 minutes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday
Week seven: 45 minutes on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday
Week eight: 45 minutes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday

I just started week four and I'm loving it.  I've had to adjust a bit due to LIFE (sick day, cramps, etc) but have been mostly sticking to this.  It's pretty easy for me to walk for 30 minutes now, and that's a big victory for me.

I haven't written a plan for the next step yet, but I think that I will keep it in two month increments for awhile because that seems to be a good calendar goal for me.  I think that next I will be adding in some strength training and yoga, plus will be trying to reach for an hour of walking.  Step three may start adding in cardio multiple days in a row!  Who knows?  I love writing my own plan.

I don't want to add any running into the mix until I weigh less than 250 pounds, which is the "maximum weight" for the treadmill that I walk on.  So far, it hasn't collapsed under me from my walking, but I don't want to break it with running!  Plus walking is a great workout in itself and an excellent stepping stone towards getting back into running shape.  :-)

Also, I have started an Instagram hashtag to chronicle healthy choices this year:  #leahgettinghealthy2016

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

My Vegan Food Pyramid Weight Loss Plan

So this is the basic food plan that I've been following since December 28th (more or less, with a few pizza and chips episodes unfortunately... but that's a blog for a different day).

I have adjusted the amounts a bit, and I don't measure anything precisely except for my oatmeal.  Everything else I eyeball and use common sense.

I also drink at least 2 liters of water daily.

I stick to the smallest number mentioned in the pyramid in order to lose weight while still getting in the nutrition my body needs.

This means that my goals for the day should be:

2 cups of vegetables
1.5 cups of fruit
3 cups of whole grains
1 cup of beans
1 oz nuts
1 cup "milk"

I adjusted for my taste preferences a bit, and swapped out the beans and grains some.  So this is what my personal goals are:

2 cups vegetables
1.5 cups/3 small pieces fruit
2 cups whole grain
1.5 cup beans
1 oz nuts
1 cup "milk"

I have been meal prepping like crazy.  Every Sunday I spend an hour or two in the kitchen to get things ready for the week.  I make enough dinner for Monday through Friday and enough lunches for Monday through Wednesday.  Then I do another lunch prep mid-week.

I'll blog about my food prepping soon!  For now, here's an example of what I've been eating:

And here's how the weight loss is going so far:

Some blog entries that are currently in the works:

Changes I've noticed since going vegan...
From no exercise at all to running a marathon- part one... and
Meal prepping tips from a lazy vegan who is on a budget...