Weight Loss Struggles – Stress!

I have heard from so many of you lately and I am finding it to be an issue for myself too.  Stress!

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What makes us stress eat?  What makes us find comfort in food? I know it has to do with the chemical balance in our brain and how certain foods trigger pleasure sensors that produce different sensations.  That is the extent of what I know on the subject except that this is just a short term fix.

I have found for myself, that I crave my comfort foods and sugary foods.  I love Mexican food and could eat it daily.  It is my comfort food, and yes you can eat vegan at a Mexican restaurant.  Again, this is just a quick fix.  I enjoy it while I am eating but then I leave feeling overly full and bloated for the next day or so.

Sugar is something I try to keep out of my house because I know I won’t be able to hide it from myself and it makes me feel even worse.

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What are your comfort foods? Comment below I want to hear from you.

For others stress often puts us in a place of not being in control.  There is an outside factor causing the stress.  So they do something they can control and that is eating.  In my opinion, just the way someone who has an eating disorder such as anorexia believes to be in control of their body I think others do the same on the opposite spectrum.

So what can we do?  I wish I could say that this was going to be easy.  If it were I would not be writing this post. Cravings are usually disguised addictions.

First, get all trigger foods out of your house.  Do not have anything that will cause you to overeat, sneak just one or encourage a midnight feast.

Second, keep a journal.  When you feel the urge to eat something you know you should not write out what you are feeling.  Are you anxious, overwhelmed or sad.  Write it out and see what emotion seems to be the biggest trigger and what food you are wanting.  Then find other ways to deal with that emotion.  Sometimes if you continue to write that will help or go for a walk or talk to a friend.  Try to find something that will bring you relaxation other than the temporary food fix.

Lastly, try to eliminate the stress.  I recently read a book that said to look at your daily to do list and see what are you doing that is benefitting you the most and what are you doing that is really just wasting time.  He said 80% of what you do is really not useful.  So find the 20%, get rid of the 80% and be more successful at what you do.  I do realize that some stress cannot be removed.  What our family is going through is nothing we can control, but I have eliminated other things that would intensify the stress.  I workout and try to laugh, both are great stress relievers.

I really hope this helps and I would love to hear your comments of things that have helped you overcome stress eating.  I would also like to hear other areas of struggle so I can address those.

Keep moving forward.

Jen

 

Are You Spartan Tough?

As you know I am marathon crazy.  I have not done many other races because I am trying to get to my goal of a marathon in all 50 states.  However, the trend of themed and obstacle running events does get me excited.  I participated in an obstacle race a few years ago and had a blast.  It was like getting to be a kid for the day.  Plus, the kids thought mom playing in the mud was pretty cool.

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Have you done one of these races?  I would love to hear your experiences. If not, check this out and see what you are missing.

 

If you would like to try one, the wonderful people of Spartan are very generous and offering a discount to all of my Miles For A Cure readers.  All you have to do is click this link and you can register with a 15% discount.

 http://bit.ly/spartanwarrior

Or would you like to WIN a FREE entry?

Click the link below to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Now check out these great new shoes from Reebok made just for you Spartans.

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A Must Read – 21 Day Weight Loss Kickstart

I love this book.

Everyone should read it.

This book, by Dr. Neal Barnard, will teach you how to lower your cholesterol, lower your blood pressure, reduce or eliminate your chance of heart disease and possibly even cure yourself from diabetes.  I love this book it truly could save your life.

Click the picture for more info.

In this book Dr. Neal Barnard helps you to understand the value of a plant based diet.  He then teaches you how to make an easy transition and then into a nutrition plan.  I have made several of the recipes in this book and they have been great.

January Fitness Challenge

This January I am putting together several different challenges to help you make 2014 your healthiest year yet.  The challenge groups, aka accountability groups, are  “secret” FaceBook  groups made up of 5-10 people that help each other stay accountable.  In the groups, each day I post challenges, fitness and nutrition tips, keep you motivated and many other things.  Most importantly in the group we encourage each other through the ups and downs that come with getting in better shape.  If there is a group that interest you contact me and I can get you the info you need to get started.  Please do not wait these groups will fill fast and you do not want to miss out.  If there is a group that I am not offering but you think would be helpful to you please make the suggestion and we can see what we can do.

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P90X3

Join me for a 90 day P90X3 Challenge. P90X3 is the newest program released by BeachBody. All workouts are 30 minutes.  For more info click here and watch here.

To be part of this Challenge you will need to P90X3 Challenge Pack.  If you have purchased a challenge pack in the past contact me and I can send you a different link.

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T25

All workouts are only 25 minutes! This group will run for 30 days with the option to go 60 or 90 days.  T25 is a fun energetic workout that is one of my favorites.  For a preview watch here.

To be part of this Challenge you will need the Focus T25 Challenge Pack.  If you have purchased a challenge pack in the past contact me and I can send you a different link.

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The Ultimate Reset

The Ultimate Reset is 21 days of resetting your body.  In 21 days you can lose weight, lower cholesterol, lower your blood pressure and have overall better health.  In 21 days you will feel like a new person.  This is a great way to start your health and fitness journey or to recover from intense training such as marathon training.  For more info watch here.

For this Challenge you will need the Ultimate Reset Challenge Pack.  If you have purchased a challenge pack in the past contact me and I can send you a different link.

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Combo Challenge

This will be a 30 day Challenge made up of various different BeachBody programs.  There are over 20 different programs and I would love to help you find which one would work best for you.  Contact me and I can get you information.  To look at the variety of programs visit my site and click on “shop” and then “programs”.

I look forward to making 2014 a great year with you.

Make me your free coach.

Out of the Shadows

This is a post I never intended to make, but with several people connecting with me lately, with the same issues, I thought this might be the nudge I needed to get it out there. Living life as a Pastor’s wife is like living in a fish bowl so I have always been known to be pretty open this is just one part I tend to keep quieter.

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After my first child I had mild issues with postpartum depression. I had heard that some women struggled with it so I really did not think much of it other than, this too will pass. After my third child was born I felt fine until she was 9 months old and I quit breastfeeding. The feelings of postpartum overwhelmed me and I felt very alone.   At the time I was also starting a new job as a 911 dispatcher which involved shift work and added stress.  For stress release I began running for the first time every morning when I got off work.

The other aspect of this was that with each pregnancy I gained more and more weight. With the third pregnancy I hit over 200 pounds. I delivered a 9 ½ pound baby and only lost 5 pounds. How do that work?

There would be a picture here but I did not take any.

So here I was overweight and depressed. I did not even recognize myself. I have a degree in Exercise Science and had worked in the fitness industry for several years.  I was very ashamed that I had not taken my own advice.

The realization of depression really hit when our church took a group to the Women of Faith conference in Houston, Tx. I remember sitting in the Toyota Center with easily 10,000 women and I felt so alone. I wanted to sneak away and hide and cry. So I did.

I left the conference got in my car to leave. At the first light out of the parking lot I was hit by another car and spun through the intersection. Thankfully my husband had on star and they did everything because I was so shaken I could not even think straight. I remember looking up into the rear view mirror and seeing two of my friends (one who had a bulging disc in her back) running down the street to be with me. I clearly heard God speak to me, “See you do have friends that love you.”

From there they took me home and talked with me the whole way about how I had been feeling and encouraged me to see a doctor. I was not so convinced, but my back was sore enough to get me to go. When I got there the Dr knew there was more wrong than my back. We talked and she prescribed. That was the last thing I wanted but knew I really had no choice.

That was me 9 years ago. Since then God has placed so many of the right people and opportunities in my life. When moving to Florida I had the privilege of coaching marathon teams for charity. This kept me active and helped me to lose some of the weight. I lost my Dad three years ago and that again brought it’s own struggles, but I was surrounded by an amazing support system.

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When we were planning to move to Houston, TX. I was presented the opportunity to become a coach for BeachBody and to help others in the same situation, I was in. I jumped on it for that reason, I also wanted to be able to coach and not have to start over every time we moved.

Since starting with BeachBody I have taken the attention off myself and my feelings and have been able to talk to others about theirs and have found God being able to use my struggles to help others. You all probably don’t know this but you help me with my weight because I know you are watching.  Since January 1 of this year I am down 15 pounds.  I am now the lowest I have been since baby number three and she is 9.  So I am pretty happy about that.  I did P90X and did not lose weight but I lost half my body fat and doubled my muscle mass.  I then lost the rest of the weight with T25 and Shakeology.  However, I am still a work in progress.

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2013

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In June BeachBody challenged us to Dream Big.  I set the goal to help people lose a combined 5,000 pounds.  So far we have reached 700 pounds gone.  Through the challenge I have had the privilege of working with people across the U.S. and Canada.  Recently, I had one participant say she feels better than she has in 21 years. Although she has reached a small milestone she feels like she has lost 100 pounds.  I have the joy of getting stories like this often.

I say all this to hopefully let you know that you are not alone. We all have struggles of some kind or another. Some just do a better job of hiding it than others.  Life is not easy.  We will always have our bumps in the road but anything is possible.  Whether it be overcoming depression or weight loss or just getting healthy you can do whatever you put your mind to.

I am always available via email of FB to chat.

What an Honor

In my last post I wrote about the End of the World marathon.  Well I am by no means fast, or as John Bingham says, “I am getting my moneys worth out of the experience.”  Well the second day of the race I was so close to quitting.  My body hurt everywhere and I had an extremely swollen achilles tendon.  If you have never experienced that, It hurts!

Well needless to say I was neck and neck for last place, or as my kids call said, I was next years winner.  I will go with that.  But in the back I had the honor of meeting an amazing man. We talked about his favorite races and he gave me tips on ones to take the kids to.  I noticed he had on a 50 states club shirt so I asked him how many marathons he had completed.  I had guessed around 100, but his response was 677!  Can you imagine 677 marathons. Thats 17,737 miles just at races, not training.

So as disappointed as I was to be so close to the back I could not have chosen a more amazing person to finish with.

My new friend Gene.

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The End of The World

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I have not yet finished blogging my different marathons.  I need to get on it since I have another one coming up next week.  I love when I get comments and emails from you saying that the posts have helped you decide which runs to do.  I just love hearing from you all.

I have now done 13 marathons and I know I say that each were my favorite, but this one was really unique.  On December 21, 2012 I did, “The End of The World Marathon” and then the following day I did, “The Day After The End of The World Marathon.”  The races took place in Humble, Tx.  There was not much that was special about the location.  It was basically a plowed field with course markers. But what made it awesome was the husband and wife team that put it together.  They were amazing.  I would do any race this couple put on.  Here are a few of the course markers that were put out.

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A view of the trail.

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Not too many places do you get to run by where they are drilling for oil.

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Most runners will admit that we are in it for the bling.  This race not only had the bling but it had great swag.  For each day we got a duffle bag, a shirt, a hat, a medal and a squeeze toy.  The toy is just something this group likes to do.  One was a Easter Island head and the other was a smiley face.

The shirts

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The BLING!!

From day 1

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From Day 2

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And a coin for doing both days.

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Just a few more random pics…

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A Bald Eagles Nest

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Happy Running

Small Changes Get Big Results

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I promise I really am not trying to come across harsh, but I hope it brings some of you to face reality.  I have been in the health and fitness industry a long time and the two excuses I hear over and over are, “I don’t have time” or “It is too expensive to eat healthy.”

I totally understand that most of us live on a budget.  I understand that a salad can cost $8 and a hamburger $1.  But have you priced up how much a heart attack cost these days?  Do you know how many days you will have to take off for a heart attack, cancer or even a stroke?

(From CBSNews.com:  “According to an article from the National Business Group on Health, the average total cost of a severe heart attack–including direct and indirect costs–is about $1 million. Direct costs include charges for hospitals, doctors and prescription drugs, while the indirect costs include lost productivity and time away from work. The average cost of a less severe heart attack is about $760,000. Amortized over 20 years, that’s $50,000 per year for a severe heart attack and $38,000 per year for a less severe heart attack.”)

So what are some small changes you can make today?  When in a rush and you have to get fast-food. I know you are not going to like this but there is nothing faster than grabbing an apple, celery and peanut butter or a banana.  Our family has changed from fast-food restaurants that serve primarily fried food to others that serve sandwiches.  You still have to be careful at these places you can eat enough mayo to counteract that decision.  I now get veggie sandwiches with avocado in place of mayo.  I get veggie patties in place of meat.  These patties are usually half the fat and calories of meat alternatives.  Surprisingly, with some kid specials we are able to eat cheaper at these restaurants than at a drive thru.

You also know I am a huge fan of Shakeology.  Shakeology is nutrition simplified.  You put it in your favorite drink, I like almond milk, shake and go.  In that cup you have over 70 super foods and more than what you would get in your vitamins.  It does not get easier than that.

Begin a workout.  If you follow me on FB you know I am addicted to T25.  No more excuses for time it is only 25 min.

You can exchange one soda a day for water.

Think about your actions and what you do each day.  What is one small thing you can change today that will make tomorrow so much better?

I highly recommend reading John C. Maxwell’s book, “Today Matters”.  It’s about the things you should do better today to make tomorrow better.  There are 12 different things, but to find those out you need to read the book.  I do love where he talks about his health  and someone asks him if he has lost his cravings, he responds, “No, my craving for life is better.”

Do something good for yourself today.