On a Journey to Wellness

Come with me on my journey to losing weight, getting healthy and going out to meet the world head-on!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Non-Weigh In

Happy Monday! I hope you're weekend was awesome and your Monday tolerable. I just finished filing my taxes online and I'm completely over it. Thank goodness for direct deposit so I don't have to worry about it anymore.

Now to the chase. Here are the results for last week.


Hips: 49 inches (same)
Waist: 45.25 inches (same)
Arm: 14.75 inches (same)
Thigh: 26.75 inches (same)
Calf: 16.75 inches (same)

So over all there wasn't much of a change. That's fine with me since I ate the worst food this weekend. It was balanced out by my awesome 5k! But nonetheless my calorie in take was so bad I'm just happy I maintained this week.



My goals for this week were; to continue drinking up to 64 oz a day, keep a calorie count around 1520, cardio  around 3x a week and strength training 4x a week. My new goal was NOT to eat after 8pm. For the most part I kept my goals but they were pretty mediocre over all.

Water: I probably drank enough water 5/7 days.

Calories: I'm kind of disappointed in myself. I would have thought I'd get better at keeping my calorie limit with my new "Don't eat after 8pm" rule but I still need to work out the kinks.

Monday: 1471
Tuesday: 2398
Wednesday: unknown
Thursday: 1612
Friday: 2024
Saturday: 2180
Sunday: 2218

So every day for the most part I went over my calorie range and over 2000. On Wednesday I forgot to count. On the weekend I ended up doing ok until I went to L.A. to get ready for my race. I ended up eating an In N Out cheeseburger and shake. On Saturday I tried a lot of protein bar samples after the race, ate Japanese food for lunch and pizza for dinner. On Sunday I ended up grazing all day. I wasn't satisfied with anything I ate and I started doing the horrible habit of grabbing something, eating it, forgetting I snacked and doing it again. Bad, bad habits.

Strength Training: Also not too well this week. I managed to work out a bit 2/7 days. I haven't been following my training with You are Your Own Gym and I need to get back to it this week.

Cardio: This I did great on. I was able to jog some of my quickest 2 mile stretches. Here it is.

Monday: -
Tuesday: 2 mile jog
Wednesday: 4 hour hike
Thursday: 2 mile jog
Friday: stretching
Saturday: 5k race!
Sunday: random bicycle riding

All of my work outs turned out really good but out of all of that I had my 5k this Saturday! It was great and I did my best time yet.

Goal(s): So this week was a bit off but followed with a great event. I need to get back to a daily routine. I need to make sure to follow my food and water goals. I also need to make sure I LOG them. A lot of my problems last week was that I kept forgetting to log a lot of things down, so I wasn't sure exactly how much water I drank, or the last time I did lunges. This week is just to keep it up. Keep it up.

I realized today that I live with a great group of very inspiring, athletic, happy, healthy people. I need to embrace and utilize that.  My new goal this week is to do just that; allow the people around me to inspire me and motivate me to do my best.

My main goal for this year (a part from reaching weight goal finally) is to be able to run a marathon and/or be part of a triathlon. That means training. That means commitment. That means dedication and discipline.

I know I can do this. I just have to take it one day at a time. Do any of you have any suggestions for marathons and/or triathlons.

I'm already planning on signing up for my next race this spring. There's a 10k in late March that is catching my eye. Once my tax return shows up I'll be able to sign up for it. I can't wait!

Good luck this week everyone!


Sunday, January 29, 2012

My COASTAL 5k January 28, 2012

Yesterday morning I woke up around 5:45 a.m. nervous yet ready to run my second 5k. I decided to spend the night at my friends house since he lives about 15 minutes away from the L.A. beach that would host the race. I got ready silently, ate a toaster waffle, had some water and by 6 a.m. I went outside to do a practice jog around my friends block. I wanted to warm up but also wanted to feel my outfit for anything annoying or distracting and make any necessary adjustments.

By 6:30 I was ready to go, woke up my friends with a morning greeting and received sleepy "good luck's" in return. I chuckled gratefully out the door.

When I arrived at the beach parking lot sunrise was at it's finest.

I stretched and walked over to the registration tables to pick up my number and T-Shirt. I was happy they had the right size for me. I really liked the long sleeve cotton shirt.

The morning was chilly and I wasn't sure if the weather would warm up enough for me to not need some sort of sweater so I put off pinning on my number and decided to power walk/jog the beach strip while I waited for 8:00 a.m. and the start of the race.

This wasn't the road we would be running on but the road crossing the actual beach. 

Me early in the morning as I power walk the beach in wait for the main event.

By this time I wasn't very nervous and I was happy seeing people coming, meeting, greeting and registering. Although I didn't recognize anyone I had a lot of fun watching all the different kinds of people; different ages, different sizes, different nationalities, people with dogs, people with strollers, pregnant, wrinkled, short, long, athletic and not.. etc. All this people watching kept me from getting angsty but I couldn't help taking this picture of the infamous finish line. LOL
"I will be crossing you soon enough my friend, and it will be glorious!"

By 7:45 a.m. the parking area was packed. There were hundreds of people there waiting for the start of the 5k and/or waiting for the 5k to commence so they could get ready for the 10k.

By this time my family showed up and I was excited.
Mom and Grandma there to support.. and hold my camera!

Soon after meeting up with family I had to leave to the start of the race up the hill from the finish line
Heading toward the start of the race. You can see the start by the tent on top of the hill.

I decided to hang in the middle of the giant crowd and to the right. From my experience in my last race I knew now that there would be a lot of people passing me in the beginning and I didn't want to be in the way. I also didn't want a lot of people in my way as I knew I would slowly (but surely) start to pass others as time progressed.

The race was a big loop along the main road above the beach. It was a little bit of a tease because looping back I could see the finish line coming closer but I had to do a long round-a-bout and then run down a ramp before heading toward the actual finish.

By the time we rounded and headed down the hill the man that I had been keeping track of and eventually catching up to, fell behind me as I picked up my pace for the last half mile. I started keeping step with this awesome and fluorescent-ly dressed woman by the time I saw my family cheering me on near the last stretch.
Go Elina Go!

Right after zooming past my cheerleading squad I spotted the 3 mile marker and knew it was time to start gunning it. By this time I was speaking my simple mantra out loud "Keep going." Breath "Keep going." Breath "Go." Breath "Go." Breath "Go." Let me tell you it helped!
I start to pick up the pace the second I see the 3 mile marker in yellow.

 I'm sweating, I'm breathing hard and I'm running. Not jogging or 'trotting', I'm running. I cross the finish line.
Crossing the finish

I look at my time and my mother comes running up to me yelling the number; "34 minutes and 20 seconds Elina!" I beat my race time by 1 minute and 10 seconds. I happily yet tiredly rejoice

As I'm hugging my dad we're asked to pose for their website, so we do.
Happy day~

We spend some time going around the booths and looking up the up coming spring races and then I spot the result sheets. So I go and find my name.
-I finished 173rd in a race of I don't know how many.
- I finished in 18th place in my age division
-I crossed the finish line at 00:34:21 
-My pace was 00:11:04 which the best time I've had...ever!

I put on my race shirt and take one last accomplished picture by the beach before we head out and meet up with friends for lunch in West Hollywood. What a great day!

I did it!

You can too.


Monday, January 23, 2012

Non-Weigh In/One week left before the 5k!

Happy Monday! And Happy Lunar New Year! This Monday morning turned out a bit rainy, which is perfect weather to just stay in and relax. But before I do that it's time for my "non-weigh in".


Hips: 49 inches (same)
Waist: 45.25 inches(+0.25 inches)
Arm: 14.75 inches (same)
Thigh: 26.75 inches (-0.25 inches)
Calf: 16.75 inches (same)

So this week it looks like I've pretty much maintained. I'm a little concerned at the 1.25 inch gain in my waist area. They say belly fat is the hardest to lose, but gain? Especially when the rest of my body seems to be going down? I don't understand but I honestly don't notice it in the mirror. Either way I have to watch out for that and just keep going.



My goal for this week was to continue drinking 50-64 oz of water a day, stay within my 1520 calorie limit, work on my jogging to train for my race and continue strength training. Here are the results.

Water: I did ok this week. I probably completed my goal 4 out of 7 days at least. I definitely felt dehydrated a few days and started chugging, which is good.

Calories: Although I usually stay well within my calorie range I continue to give in to some sort of last minute food in the evening which ends up putting me over. If I could stop snacking after dinner that would completely fix my "overdrafts" each night. Sigh*, alas here are the results.

Monday: 1515
Tuesday: 1863
Wednesday: 2140
Thursday: 1495
Friday: 2034
Saturday: 1495
Sunday: 2492

I'm incredibly happy that I managed to stay under my calorie limit 3 of 7 days. I then went slightly over 2000 the rest of the week. Everything was ok until last night, Sunday. What happened on Sunday? It's called chocolate covered peanuts.

Strength Training: I didn't do too well this week. I might have strength trained once last week. The rest of the time I simply stretched.

Cardio: I managed to get a good amount of cardio in this week. I feel much more prepared for the race this weekend.

Monday: -
Tuesday: 4 mile hike
Wednesday: 2 mile hike and 1 mile jog
Thursday: 2 mile jog
Friday: 3 mile hike and about 4 hours of dancing :)
Saturday: 3.1 mile jog
Sunday: miscellaneous walking

I ended up doing shorter hikes during work and jogged three days out of the week. On Saturday I ended up jogging a 5k in 37 minutes! That's my best time since right before my last 5k in November. It was a really nice run and it went very smoothly. I felt like I could go on forever.~


Goal(s): I'm going to add a new challenge seeing as my eating habits need adjusting. I'm going to not eat after dinner. In other words I'm going to give myself a food curfew. After 8pm I will stop eating. Now if I hadn't eaten dinner yet by this time then yes I'll eat dinner but that's it. Other than that I'm going to start logging my water intake. I currently don't log exactly how much water I drink and estimate on the amount of water left in my nalgene water bottle. I need to make sure I'm actually drinking the proper amounts of water. This week I'll also be continuing strength training and do some last minute jog training before race day. I don't want to get lazy and then attempt to do a long distance run right before the race. I don't want to burn myself out before it even happens.

Nervously enthrusiastic!
Now am I nervous for the 5k? YES. Realizing it's 5 days away is scary. I signed up for it on a whim and I'll be doing it alone this time. It's not a problem but I suppose the idea that I was part of a group that was running together and that there were teammates at the finish line waiting for me to join them really helped last time. This time it's all me. It'll be interesting to see how far I can go on my own. How much morale can I give myself? How far can I push myself to reach the finish line?

So am I nervous? Yes, I am. I have the tendency to worry and underestimate myself. I don't want to let myself down (if that makes any sense. LOL) I want to have a good time. Although I keep reminding myself that the timing isn't really what's important a part of me really wants to BEAT my last time. I don't know if that will happen but I'm going to try!

Good luck to all on their own journeys! Let's have a great week!


Monday, January 16, 2012

Non-Weigh In

Happy Monday everyone!

Although I spent most of the day online I didn't get a chance to make this entry until now. But I am here! And after my multiple entries yesterday I feel better about my blogging progress. So let's start.


Hips: 49 inches (same)
Waist: 45 inches (+1 inch)
Arm: 14.75 inches (-0.75 inch)
Thigh: 27 inches (-1 inch)
Calf: 16.75 inches (-1.25 inches)

So I'm pretty surprised at my measurement results partly because there's an added inch to my waist while at the same time there's a considerable loss in the rest of my body. Overall not a bad result for one week!

My goals for this week were to continue drinking up to 64 oz of water a day, stay within my calorie limit of 1520 calories, do more strenuous hikes and run 4 miles in the week. This week was not that great but I still managed to complete most of my goals.

Water: I managed to drink up to 50 oz maybe 4 out of 7 days last week. I definitely felt dehydrated more often than I was comfortable.

Calories: My calorie range is 1520. I absolutely failed that this week. Here are the (non)results:

Monday: 1578
Tuesday: 1803
Wednesday: 2000+
Thursday: 2000+
Friday: 2000+
Saturday: 2352
Sunday: 1961

So in reality I started going off wagon in the middle of the week and didn't even track on Wed-Fri though I'm sure it was way over 2000 calories each day. On the weekend I mentally slapped myself and started tracking again but I still continued to "over snack" and ended up much higher than the calorie limit.

Time to try again this week.

Strength Training: 3 out of 4 days not bad although one of those days was working with the climbing wall at work which is an arm work out in of itself.

Cardio: Although I had done a hike the day before I still managed to go for a short run on Monday.

Monday: 1.3 miles
Tuesday: 2 miles
Wednesday: 3.3 mile hike
Thursday: -
Friday: 2 miles
Saturday: 6 mile hike
Sunday: 4 miles

So although I was being a lazy bum on my calorie counting I was still able to get quite a bit of cardio in.

The goal for this week is to continue the water in take. Try being more strict with my calories and try my hardest to keep it at 1520 calories if not lower. I need to be more accountable with strength training and I need to make sure I continue jogging. Race day is less than two weeks away (yikes!) I need to make sure that I'm ready. I don't have to be fast but I need to make sure I'm not going to hurt myself or get too winded or something.

Wish me luck and good luck this week!


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Transformation Road

Yesterday after my morning hike I spent the rest of the day reading my copy of Sean Anderson's Transformation Road 

I really wish I had this book during the Christmas Dress Countdown Challenge since it turned out to be one of the best books I've read in a long time. Sean's recount of his life and how he came to weigh 505 lbs, his struggles and life journey and then finally lose that weight really helped me think about my own life.

 It made me reflect on my actions and how I've led my life. It made me think of how my insecurities and my own mentality are what have kept me back all these years. I can completely relate and empathize with Sean's childhood insecurities and his drive to move up in his career and how his weight had prevented him (or the belief that his weight had prevented him) from getting farther in it. Or even the thought of using self-deprecating humor while inside he hated doing it; all of it felt like he was somehow describing me. All of it gave me drive to continue this journey. It confirmed my belief that I'm not doing this for nothing. That my health IS important and that I AM worth the time.

I understand that self-discipline and resisting temptation as well as needing to stop using food as an instant fix for my problems are things I personally have to fight to continue losing weight and becoming a better, balanced and happy person.

I KNOW that losing the weight isn't going to magically "fix" everything in my life. But I admit a part of me still believes that if I can just reach goal life would be so much better. I have to remember that it's the JOURNEY of getting to my weight goal that will help me become a better me, not just the destination.

If I can conquer my fears, stop underestimating myself, quit procrastinating, give myself a break, and grow confidence not only will I lose weight but my jobs can get better, my relationships can be smoother, my happiness can grow. My self-content will be at an all time high.

Oh how I love the possibilities. Sean's story really motivated me... and made me cry. It's a real story of a real person and it helps that I can just go to his facebook page and leave him a question if I wanted AND know that he'll read it. LOL. That sense of closeness or familiarity also helps a ton.

I really feel like taking some of his actions and trying them myself. It's not the first time I've heard food intake and calories being compared to a bank account/budget. I also like the idea of blogging daily. Not only will it keep me super accountable but it could definitely liven up this blog in general. I think I'll try it. For as long as I can.

I'll write more about it tomorrow during the "Non-Weigh In" post. But I feel like it's something that's definitely do-able.

Thank you Sean for sharing your story. I really suggest this book to anyone who is trying to lose weight and enjoy a good life story.


Yesterdays Hiking Adventure

Yesterday I went on this beautiful 6 mile hike just around the corner of where I live. I knew that there were a ton of trail heads near me but I hadn't had much time felt comfortable going on them without a map or some sort of direction. Since I bought my local hike book I decided to try out this hike. It was a nice overcast day and the trail ended up being this gradual climb (uuhhgg uphill!) but believe me the view at the top was worth it.

The start of the trail. I loved this little rock bridge

After about half a mile I finally reached the switchbacks up the mountain. It was a really gradual climb and not as bad as I first made it sound. This is the view of the valley from halfway up the hill.

When I finally reached the top I was able to see the desert on the other side!

After that I still had about a mile left to go to get to the spring I was headed to. As I walked I suddenly saw large patches of snow, and it reminded me that yes, it is winter isn't it? LOL

When I finally got to the spring there wasn't much water yet (it's supposed to rain tonight so I guess I should have waited huh?) but I was thrilled to find this little frozen stream. Hilarious!

Running in to two gentlemen on the way back we talked about the lack of water on the spring and how beautiful everything was. I love running in to people like that. When I reached the peak again I took this picture.

before heading back down and finishing the morning feeling great.

Isn't nature fun!


Dedication is Waning

I've slowly been noticing that my dedication to this blog, to my goals, and my fellow bloggers has been waning. I can't say that I've been incredibly busy or stressed. My distractions and procrastination has been slowly creeping up on me.

I don't want that to happen. This blog and the community I've found either in blogger or outside of it has helped me so tremendously. And yet I feel like I haven't given back. I haven't contributed. I've let people down. I don't update as often as I should, or as often as I promise.

I am not the kind of person who flakes too often on their promises. And if I do I try my hardest to redeem myself.

This isn't to say that I've given up or the blog is no longer useful. It simply means that the honey moon "oh wow look at the numbers on the scale fall and people love me!" phase is over and the real, hard truth about what it takes to lose weight is really here.

It's all mental. It's all in my head and it all depends on me. So my frustration at having food lying around the kitchen, or people baking wonderful eateries and then leaving them for everyone else to eat, or bringing a ton of sweets in the house constantly.. is not their fault. No one is FORCING me to eat them. It is up to ME to resist temptation. It is up to ME to say no. It is up to ME to choose the portion sizes.  No one else but me.

I am my own worst enemy.

This week wasn't perfect. I'll check in on the (lack of) progress tomorrow on my "Non-Weigh In". In the meantime I'll stop complaining and making excuses for myself and my actions. Things can be really simple and don't have to be this hard.

It is not hard. It can be fun. It can be exciting. It all depends on how I consider this journey to be. Is it a chore or an adventure?

I choose adventure. I choose it to be a fun challenge to see how well I can eat at a fixed calorie budget. I choose what kind of activities and work outs I do and where they take me. I choose.

I choose to continue. I choose to try harder. I choose not to give up. I choose NOT to accept the person I see in the mirror now because I KNOW I can be better than this!

I need to stop being afraid of..... everything! I need to do this for me.

One day at a time.

I can do this. No more waning. I am here.


Monday, January 9, 2012

Non-Weigh In

Good Afternoon and Happy Monday!

I'll be doing a quick Non-Weigh In this morning. I'll do a more thorough post either tonight or tomorrow.

Since I decided to no longer do Weekly Weigh Ins (but keep Monthly Weigh Ins) I decided to keep track a different way by body measurements. So here goes the first measurement of the season:

Hips: 49 inches
Waist: 44 inches
Arm: 15.5 inches
Thigh: 28 inches
Calf: 18 inches

Since the last time I measured a few months ago I've gained about one inch in hips, 2 inches in waist and I honestly can't remember the rest.

I'll keep tabs on my measurements weekly and post them in each check in.
My goals for this week were to drink water, eat at a certain calorie range, do strength training 3 to 4 times a week as well as cardio 6 times a week.

Here are the results for the first week:

Water: I was able to drink between 50 to 64 oz of water 7 days. Yay! I really feel less bloated thanks to that.

Calories: My calorie range was around 1520 calories a day. I started calorie counting on Tuesday of last week and here are the results

Tues: 1440
Fri: 2189
Sat: 2217

I was having stomach trouble earlier in the week so you can see that my appetite was pretty suppressed, and as the weekend progressed I felt better and my appetite returned, as well as un-needed calories. We also had a Feast on Saturday to celebrate the staff return to work so I've also been eating a lot of leftovers.

This week I have to check myself and keep myself accountable.

Strength Training: I was able to do 3 out of 4 days a week

Cardio: Because I was feeling pretty horrible I didn't start cardio until Wednesday. From there I was able to move my legs until the end of the week.

Wed: 1 mile run
Thurs: 2 mile hike
Fri: 2 mile run
Sat: 4 mile run
Sun: 9 mile hike
The goals for this week are; to continue my water in take at 64 oz, continue my second week of strength training, move up to more 4 mile runs throughout the week, and more strenuous hikes this weekend. Because I don't want to wear myself out too early, and because I just finished a 9 mile hike last night I might choose to skip cardio for today.

That's all for now. I'll give a new post soon talking about my new diet plans and giving details of my awesome hike this weekend.

Until then!


Saturday, January 7, 2012

I love running at night.

I love running at night. I didn't realize this until last night when I went for a slow jog around my neighborhood after dinner.

I've always jogged in the morning. It's been my thing where I wake up, stretch, moan and groan, put on my shoes and go outside. After a while, and after attempting to run first thing  after waking up in the morning I realized it wasn't the greatest idea. (Runners might know what I'm talking about here but I'm not going to elaborate.) So a few times and especially recently I've tried running after work/dinner.

Because it's winter it gets dark early so by 5pm it's pitch black in the mountain and it gets chilly. This week has actually been amazing and the weather last night was around 40 degrees Fahrenheit at around 7pm. So I started my 2 mile loop. I had a headlamp with me, not because I needed it, but because I wanted to make sure motorists saw ME. I realized early that I could see just fine with the moon and the few lights of the neighboring houses. Because I live in such a beautiful area I can see the stars, there's hardly any traffic and it's quiet.

Now you may tell me, that's fine and dandy for you Elina but I live in a city. Well I started doing the same thing when I was home. In one of the major streets and over the highway bridge. I still liked it.

The main thing about it is that there are less distractions. Things are calmer, I can't see a lot of color and details and so my eyes don't wander. I can't tell where my next turn is going to be so I don't stress about when I'm going to get there and how slow I'm going. I just jog. I'll get there when I get there. It feels really good.

Last night really drove that home for me. It was my first time jogging that loop since coming back to work. I was worried, knowing how out of shape I am. But with my slow/steady pace it went great and literally before I knew it I was turning my last corner and finishing the last stretch no problem. Thirty minutes of exercise done in a snap. It felt great.

Now the problem is keeping it up. Keeping up my night routines after long days, or cold nights etc when I'm tired and cranky and all I want to do is put my comfy pants on and go to bed. I have to keep that in perspective.

For now I'm happy. I love running at night. Do you?


Friday, January 6, 2012

Back to Work!

It's Back to Work time! I mean that literally and figuratively since three days ago I returned to the mountain and instantly proceeded to start Winter/Spring training for the next season. I also mean it's "back to work" time because I'm in full swing with my new plan.  (Which should be called my old plan renewed but alas I digress).

If you remember I've decided to go back to doing small streaks. Committing to an action whether it's drinking a certain amount of water for a week, counting calories for a week, or doing an exercise program for a week. I've started all three.

I started on Tuesday but in reality I started full swing on Wednesday when I returned to work. Now that I have a smartphone (oh snap Elina is up to date with technology? What is this world coming to?)

My first attempt at taking a picture with my phone and attaching it to the inter-webs

I downloaded this wonderful app called "My Fitness Pal". It's calorie counter is very impressive and has a much simpler system than the one in sparkpeople.com. That and I can carry it with me so I can easily add food I've eaten right there on the table.

I've so far kept my calories under 1500. The main reason it hasn't gone over is for the unfortunate fact that I've had some sort of food poisoning this week and apart from the stomach cramps and occasional dry heaving, the thought of food just wasn't very appealing.

I'm feeling much better now, though the occasional dull pain in my stomach reminds me not to go crazy when I do feel better.

As for water, I've mainly been keeping up my 50-64oz a day due in part again with my stomach problems. The cure for almost any ailment is hydration (in my opinion) so I've been downing water like a fiend! LOL

With exercise I've been following my You are Your Own Gym regimen I started in December. I started over since I kind of abandoned it during the holidays. I've also managed to jog one mile a couple of days ago (I didn't feel comfortable doing anymore when all I really wanted to do is find some pepto, curl up in a ball and fall asleep), and yesterday my co-workers and I went on a nice hike during our training.

The view of Taquitz peak in the San Jacinto mts

Although the hike was at most 2 miles, the up and down trail and keeping up with the nice pace of my co-workers really helped get my heart pumping and my legs moving. It's times like these that I remember why I love hiking, love nature, and love my job. LOL

I've noticed so far that my face is less bloated, and although I haven't checked I don't feel as bloated in general. All is good.

Now I'll do a check in again on Monday; however, I will not be weighing in. I decided, at least for now, NO MORE WEEKLY WEIGH INS!

I've had enough time to know and notice that I let the scale choose my mood. Although I try not to, the number on the scale either defeats me or delights me. I don't want that number to chain me down from my achievements. So for now I will not step on the scale every week. I WILL do a MONTHLY weigh in though. Scale or no this is a weight loss journey and knowing where I am, at least monthly, is still important.

Off to breakfast!


Sunday, January 1, 2012

2012 Weigh In and Plan

Hello Everyone! I hope everyone had a fantastic celebration ringing in the New Year. I had a nice time with my family. Now it's January 1st and it's time for celebrations to end and to get back to work.

I admit I've been almost completely off track this last week and a half. My few work outs here and there could not compensate for the amount of food (and the type of food) I have been consuming during the holidays. To add to that I've been completely idle, laying around the house, doing some spring cleaning, laying around some more. I've been feeling bloated and sick. So when I finally weighed myself early this morning the number on the scale didn't shock me that much (the evidence was in the mirror) but it didn't stop me from having a mini-break down and almost crying myself back to sleep as I intentionally hid back in to the covers.

Current Weight: 224.6 lbs ( +9.8 lbs in 12 days)

Binge eating doesn't begin to explain what I've been doing. But it never ceases to amaze me how I can gain such a large amount of weight in such little time. That means that I gained almost a pound a day. That's amazing. Horrible, yet truly amazing.

Well vacation and gluttony is over. In a couple of days I'm going to be heading back up the mountain and I already started my new plan and my new goals.

The Main Goal for the Year:

My main goal for this year (besides finally getting to goal weight and I'm not kidding this time) is being able to walk a marathon and (if possible) try a triathlon. That means training. That means commitment and signing up for races. That means getting on a bike (which I haven't done in years) and figuring that out again.

Well guess what I've already started! I signed up for a 5k! It's for the last weekend of January! Eeek! So I need to really start training more.

I started last week already. I probably ran 5k's every other day last week. I've been pretty slow. Since I hadn't really jogged since November I knew that was going to happen. I'm pretty confident that I'll be ok for this 5k.

From there I plan to save money and head back to Catalina Island this spring to finish the Trans Catalina trail. It's over 15 miles and it's pretty steep for most of it. So I'm also planning on hiking a ton to get prepared for the Trans Cat.

Now the main thing is food. It's always about the food. So I finally decided to buy The Paleo Diet book by Loren Cordain. I keep talking and mentioning that I want to work on my diet and Paleo has caught my attention for a long time now. Fortunately, thanks to a couple of wonderful people I've gotten more resources to learning about the diet and life changes.

To help me with my hiking I bought a local hiker guide book to get the most out of my wanderings:

and to keep me motivated I happily bought the awesome Sean Anderson's new book Transformation Road

I'm really excited about this book and hope to have a good read if not have a new inspirational tool.

I ordered all books to my address in the mountain and hopefully the books will be waiting for me when I get back to work.

Now how am I going to achieve all of this without burning out and giving up? Small steps and commitment.

The Small-yet-Big Goals

Looking back at my past successes it's always been the really small steps that have helped me out. Making small streaks and doing things where you go "a little farther" every day is what's helped me get this far. Discarding that is what's gotten me to re-gain.

So although I have these big plans I'm starting small. I'm going to focus on one thing at a time.

My first streak is going to be jogging/walking daily. I'm going to attempt to do that for a week.

Another streak is going to be finishing my 64 oz water bottle everyday. Whether I drink more water than that is fine but finishing that water bottle will be enough for now.

The last initial streak I'll try is eating less grains. If I can try to eat as little grains as possible for each meal for a week that will be enough for now.

A little goes a long way!

So that's it. I have high hopes for 2012. It all depends on how determined and disciplined I can be. This is it. I can do this! And I KNOW you can too.

Let's start the year off right.