Friday, March 1, 2013

Doing what it takes to be me...

So here it is…the cold hard truth…I stood in my kitchen and I cried for food. Its not that I don’t eat or that I never treat myself. It’s that I want to eat junk, everyday, all day. I don’t want to think about food. I don’t want to think about my health. I don’t want to carry this burden for the rest of my life. But I will because I have to.

So here’s what happened…After the holidays as many of you already know. I vowed to get back to work on my health and my body. And I did just that for a few days or a few weeks at a time. For me eating is an addiction. I crave sugar and fat. If I went through a day with out giving it any thought I’d eat things like cookies and cookie dough and fast food for every meal. I love cheeseburgers and french fries and the sad thing is I’ll eat them from anywhere even if the taste really isn’t all that good. My body wants most anything that isn’t good for it.

I’ve come to realize though that it’s a mental and emotional issue for me too.  The night I cried I told Joey that I wanted to go out to eat and get “an emotionally soothing dinner” and though he knew I’d bite his face off he stood there and said that I have to pull it together. He’s a good man! Thank God for him!

 Joey reminded me that the battle I’m fighting isn’t just about eating right it is about becoming the person that I want to be, the person that I know I can be. I cried for food because I realized that this is going to be a lifelong cross for me to bear. It will never become natural for me to make the right healthy choices. I will always have to push myself beyond my comfort zone and preferred food coma zone to be who I can be – the real me!

When I’m sharing my successes never think that it all comes easy for me and that you are alone in your struggles. That is just NOT the case. I want to share everything, the good, the bad and the ugly so that I can inspire you to challenge yourself to be the real you too!

It’s not always easy but it is sooooo worth it. So I’ll take a moment to look back to remind myself just how worth it it really is...

What this picture doesn’t show is how much better I really feel when I get over my struggles and make the right choices for myself and my body. I want to reach my final weight goal once and for all. I weighed just now and I am back to 175 so that means I want to lose 20 more pounds. I already know what I have to do. The tools are right before me – my AMAZING Vi shakes and quality and nutritious snacks and a meal. Add as much exercise as I can muster and I’m on a roll. It really is that easy once you kick your negativity and commit to your goals.

Find me on Facebook to see my Challenge updates and get tips and motivation!

Let’s do this!!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

What do Christmas trees, Motivation and Jesus have in Common?

I was sitting in my front room watching my husband build a fire and thinking about my plans for the day. Near the front window stood one of the two Christmas trees I still hadn't taken down. I had stopped turning them on after the Epiphany and they'd just become an unnoticed part of our home. I knew they were there, I knew I needed to take them down, yet somehow I'd managed to take my eyes and mind off of them even though they stood there waiting. That is when I realized what Christmas trees, motivation and Jesus all have in common. All three wait patiently for me to do my part.

People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily.
-- Zig Ziglar

All good things in life take effort and motivation is one of them. If you are sitting there waiting for the motivation to come so that you can make a positive change in yourself - STOP waiting! Decide WHY you want to change, inscribe it on your heart and then ACT. Your motivation will ebb and flow but the reason you want it will always be with you. I tell myself when my motivation is low that no one always feels motivated but successful people do it anyway!

So how is Jesus like my Christmas trees and Motivation?

Even a studied and devoted Christian can become complacent. We get caught up in worldly things - our day to day lives - and we see Jesus standing there like my Christmas trees and motivation. Standing there waiting. He is ever present in our homes and our lives waiting there for us to do our part. We have to stop walking past Him, barely acknowledging His presence, thinking that we are doing enough because we believe He is there. There is more to faith than belief. Everyday I learn more about this. Our relationship with God can't be one-sided. Healthy relationships are formed when both participants contribute. God has amazing plans for us, but again, ALL good things take effort. Ask God today to guide you on His path and then get up and walk with Him.

“And now, O Lord, for what do I wait?  My hope is in you." Psalm 39:7  


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Facing the truth. Life's a Challenge

Had a great chat with my wonderful friend and mentor Suzanne Barger. Sometimes I wonder if we are sisters from another mother. I can always count on her to know exactly where I'm coming from and give me the push I need to get back on the right foot. So after reading her latest blogs and having a heart to heart with her I have decided to really come out and be honest with myself and with you...

Here it is, It hurts to admit but I'm struggling. It is so much easier to make bad choices when it comes to food. Bad choices are convenient, they taste good, the taste is comforting and they don't take much effort or thought. Good choices require planning and compromises and this time of year I just don't want to do that.

Last April I was a chronic napper who lived on coffee, sweets and fast food. I spent as little active time with my friends and family as possible because all I wanted to do was sit or sleep. With the tools I found - The Body By Vi 90 Day Challenge and the team that comes along with that - I successfully grew thinner and more healthy. I stand by this Health platform with all my heart but I'm admitting today that this isn't always as easy as it looks.

Here I am 8 months later, fluctuating between 50-56 pounds lighter, more healthy than I've been since childhood and still life can get me down. I'm human and I want to admit my struggles for two reasons. One, so I can be honest with myself and learn to grow beyond my struggles and two,  so I can be honest with you and help you grow beyond your struggles.

This time of year can be hard for many reasons, the food is yummy and being gifted, the stress is high, sadness can creep in from loss, etc. Everyone has their own story and triggers. So know that you are not alone.

I'm here, I'm struggling, but I'm not giving up! Praying for God's guidance for myself and for you. I will do my best to overcome these struggles and continue modeling a healthy life but a real life so that I can help as many people as possible do the same. I am so thankful to my team for the constant support that we give each other, without them and the yummy tools that Visalus provides I would never have made it this far and I wouldn't have the determination to fight this lull and rise above it! Love you all!

If you wanna join us let me know! :)

Check out Suzanne's Blog at

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Getting Through this Season

I Love this time of year! Its that time of year when we feel closer to our loved ones and even strangers. We smile more and eat more too! The feelings that this season brings can often be tied to certain foods because of the memories we created while sharing those foods with those we loved. While out doing my Christmas shopping I crave a latte' and pastry because I remember the times I shopped with my Mom and sister or my Mother-in-law and we'd stop and enjoy a break over something warm and sweet. Those memories bring me comfort and therefore so does that food. There are many examples of this. The traditional Christmas meals, the cookies and baked good that we share and of course the Holiday spirits. All of these foods and drinks bring us joy and comfort and remind us of great memories while helping us create more. And you know what...that's not totally wrong. We can't go through our lives completely depriving ourselves of the foods and drinks that bring us joy. God wants us to enjoy these things - in moderation.

Here is where I divulge my past weakness...I have lost weight many times. I have been able to make great strides when ever I decide to do so. But EVERY SINGLE time it was this time of year that sent me in a tail spin and I lost my motivation. Why? I justified overeating and poor choices with the feelings of the season that these foods created. And I failed to prepare myself to get back on track.

I am excited to gain some weight this season! Yes, you read that correctly. I don't doubt that I will gain a little, that is a side effect of celebration sometimes and we have to be ok with that. Every obstacle we face is an opportunity to learn and grow. I have finally armed myself with the tools I need to face these obstacles and I'm excited to make it thru this season for the first time ever knowing that I will probably gain some weight but I will not run away from my Challenges this time!

Here are my secrets...

1. Pray.
Yes God wants us to enjoy life and celebrate with all our senses this season. We should be in awe and grateful for the birth of our Lord. We should also be reminded thru time with God that Jesus was born so that he could suffer and die for us. So how does this relate to our eating choices? While we are justified in celebrating Christ we also have to remember that our bodies house the Holy Spirit and our bodies our not just a means for us to function but also a means for us to share God's love.(1Cor 6:19).

God knows that many of us struggle with this and He cares and wants to help us through. Don't assume that praying about food is beneath God. He cares about EVERYTHING that is important to us.

2. Choose Wisely
While I am aware that I will eat somethings these season that I have made an effort to avoid throughout the year, I am also aware that I can use the same motivation to choose to eat smaller portions and to make compromises. If the dessert is the most important part of your holiday celebration - maybe choose to skip the cocktails. Every compromise you make and every time you enjoy without indulging you empower yourself. Be proud of each good choice you make. And that leads me to #3...

3. Don't punish yourself
Recognize ahead of time that you will be eating or drinking differently than you have this year and accept that. Ignore the voices in your head that are berating you over that one bite of pumpkin pie. Celebrate in moderation - don't punish your body with excess and don't punish your mind and emotions with regret. If you make good choices in moderation there is nothing to regret.

4. Keep Moving
Don't slack off on the exercise because it is the holidays. The more you move the more you'll burn the additional calories. Even add some extra exercise...Take an evening walk and look at the neighborhood decorations and lights.

5. Be ready to take on your next Challenge
Living my life in a series of 90 Day Challenges has been the best choice I have made for my health. I have learned more and grown more healthy than with any other "diet" I have tried in the past. 2013 is quickly approaching and I challenge you to keep that in mind during this season. Prepare yourself to take on a Challenge by thinking and praying about why you want to do so. This is an excellent time of year to find your "why." Reflect on the things that matter to you and the reasons why choosing better health for yourself should be a top priority. Get yourself ready to up your game and become the person you know you can be.

Join me on January 5th for the World's Largest Resolution Rally! I want to encourage and inspire as many people as possible this year. Let's do it together. Text your resolution to (323)378-5863 and fill out the contact info on my website and I will personally get in touch with you to discuss your goals and assist you in meeting them!

May you have a Blessed Christmas and a Rockin' New Year! I look forward to connecting with you! 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Breaking habits, Making Choices

As humans we all takes things personally. Especially women. It is odd and sometimes hurts my feelings how defensive people get about my success. I guess that when we look at someone who is doing well, or making progress in areas that we'd like to see ourselves improve it can make us feel hurt and defensive. I do not believe I am better than anyone else and I pray that I never make anyone feel that way. I have noticed that many people who have followed my challenge journey feel as if they have to justify to me why they aren't changing their diets or exercising more. I am regularly approached by women especially who just want to tell me that they don't have time to exercise or they don't drink shakes or they can't give up french fries. Even when I haven't mentioned a thing about either of these subjects. I hate that I make these people feel bad. :(  I want to help people, inspire people. I know that not everyone will like me or be willing to let me help them but I hope that I can use my story, my successes and my struggles, to help others who want help.

I looked back at myself before I was introduced to Body by Vi and tried to remember if I ever felt like I had to justify my choices and I remember that I did. Making the choice to make life changes is the hardest choice ever because it requires action. If we defend our habits, we have no intentions of quitting them. I use to explain to my husband why it was OK for me to eat more junk and I remember him saying that I didn't owe him any explanations, that is was my choice. That always made me feel worse because deep down I knew that it wasn't the best choice. If I had someone that would agree with my justifications then that would make it better right? 

I remember watching my friend Suzanne during her first 90 day Challenge and making excuses and feeling jealous. But I finally realized that God was waving this opportunity in my face and I had to take action. It was scary. But I made a vow to stop making excuses and replace negative thoughts with inspired thoughts. 

It isn't always easy. Sometimes its downright hard. But every choice we make determines whether we are moving toward success. The beauty is we can make a choice anytime. Choose now to get started making your life healthier. If you make a mistake, you're human and guess what - you get to make another choice! You can always choose to do better if you will start to make your excuses be your reasons why and not your reasons why not.

If you are in a pattern of defeat or excuse making and would like to talk with me more about how I work toward breaking these habits, I'd love to hear from you. Comment, email or leave contact info on my website. We were made for more!!

“I was made for more than being stuck in a vicious cycle of defeat. I am not made to be a victim of my poor choices. I was made to be a victorious child of God.”
―Lysa TerKeurst, Made to Crave:Satisfying Your Deepest Desire with God, Not Food

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Confessions of a Self-Saboteur

 Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win.  Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air;  but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.                
            1 Corinthians 9:24-27

I have tried for years to lose weight. I am usually successful at anything I put my mind to so at times I have had great success but never long term. Right when I'm about to reach the finish line I sabotage myself. I have been in that same pattern for so long that it is almost a reflex. I don't even realize I'm doing it. 

My last blog post was a celebration of victory over my cravings. I'm getting closer to my lifetime healthy weight and I have been able to share with you how you too can overcome obstacles and win the race. But I don't have any right preaching to others unless I keep in practice with what I preach. I am writing today to apologize. I want to apologize to you for sharing my victory and turning around and losing my self-control. I want to apologize to myself for losing self-control and more importantly forgive myself and move forward. I want to apologize to God for losing self-control. I praised Him in my last post but in my heart I was praising myself more for the good choices. When we lose sight of where our strength comes from we can get weak. I did. 

Here's the story...This isn't about cravings. I want to clarify to myself and to you that self sabotage isn't always food craving induced. I've been busy (blessedly busy) and I let my choices get less thoughtful and less prayerful. I came home late from a Challenge Party where I was sharing my story and encouraging others to help themselves and in my fridge I found left over Papa John's Cinna-pie. Without giving it a second thought I grabbed a piece - one won't hurt. I was right - one won't hurt. Its the self-control or lack there of that follows that choice that hurts. I immediately felt guilty and instead of praying and forgiving myself I vowed to keep my slip up a secret. Self-Sabotage begins...

Even if I don't tell anyone my body knows and more importantly than that God knows. He knows the secrets in my heart. (Psalm 44:21) God isn't mad at me for my choice. He wants the best for me. If I had eaten that piece of cinna-pie with no regret, made adjustments for it in my work-out or compromises with my other food choices then I would have been fine. Instead the secret festered inside my heart. My guilt grew and became disguised as entitlement. "I've worked hard, I deserve this pizza." Then turned into excuses, "If I just take of one side of the bun off this burger (greasy, full fat, McBadword burger loaded with full fat mayo) then I'll be fine." I can't justify bad choices. I can't continue to reach my goals and hopefully spread motivation to anyone who wants my help or hears my story if I don't have self control in all things. We're all human. We all fall short of God's glory. So I confess today that I have caught myself in my pattern of self destruction and I WILL overcome. 

Every obstacle including the ones we place before ourselves are just opportunities to learn and grow and gain strength. I challenge you today to recognize your self sabotage and areas where you may lack self-control. Confess and forgive and grow stronger with  me.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Old Habits Die Hard

This morning I was able to get both kids off to school and for the first time in a while I had no obligations. Sure there is plenty to do but I get choose from them. The temperature outside was slightly cooler than lately and me being an all things Autumn junkie my first instinct was to hit the local coffee shop for a pumpkin spice latte and a pumpkin scone. I have a house full of healthy food choices AND I had already had my breakfast shake. On top of that I have lots of other things I could spend my money on besides the local coffee shop. So the question is why? Why after 5 months is it still so hard sometimes to make the right choice? Why do these cravings come out of no where even when I'm not hungry?

I was talking with a friend the other day and she said she doesn't eat because of emotions. This interested me because she is a woman and I've never met a woman that felt this way. So I've been thinking. What triggers cravings or just the desire to eat or drink something in general aside from true hunger. I think many of us don't realize that we eat for other reasons than hunger because we associate emotion eating with sadness and stress. Its not just sadness, depression or stress, many of us eat when we're happy, or bored. But what I realized today is that sometimes the choices we make are just a bad habit and associations we don't even realize we have.

I associate school starting and cooler weather with Autumn. I have had a habit in the past of using my time to myself to eat soothing foods and cuddle under blankets. Mix the weather and the alone time and I get pumpkin spice latte's and pumpkin scones. Now is there anything wrong with me doing this? No and yes. No - it is not wrong for me to indulge occasionally. Yes it is wrong for me to indulge because I crave it so badly that I give the yummy treats control of me. I guarantee you that I will have a pumpkin spice latte and pumpkin scone between now and Thanksgiving but I will do it when I have planned for it. When it will benefit me most, both my mind and my body. I will make adjustments in my diet and my exercise for the indulgence and I will be the deciding force for when it is right to indulge - not my tummy, not my taste buds and not my bad habits. 

This was a hard step for me. My car almost pulled into the coffee shop parking lot on its own. I tortured myself for the 10 minutes it took to get to that area trying to come up with every justification possible and then I prayed. I prayed for God's forgiveness of my weakness. I recognized that my body is His temple and by taking care of it I give glory and honor to Him. I asked God to help me feel more in control of my choices and my cravings and I turned the wheel toward home and away from the coffee shop. Victory! Thank you God - you are ALWAYS there for me. 

Every obstacle you overcome makes you that much stronger and that much more capable of handling the next thing that comes your way. If I can do this - You can do this!

And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

2 Corinthians 12:9