Journey to the best health of my life (yes, the journey includes olives)


Almost 2015!

Hello everyone!  It has been a while since I posted, but I promise you I am still alive and kicking. I had a couple of weeks off work and really enjoyed not doing much! It was my first staycation in many years. I enjoyed not being controlled by time. I enjoyed doing exactly what I wanted to do. I enjoyed staying away from the computer. I enjoyed going to sleep when I was tired and waking up when my body was ready. I really enjoyed The West Wing (yes, I’m a few years behind). The two weeks away from the office was wonderful.  I felt free.

On Sunday night I faced the daunting task of waking up for work. My body had not been up at 4:50 a.m. for two weeks. Although I generally enjoy my work, I was dreading stepping into the office.  In fact, I had been dreading it for days (maybe even 50% of my staycation!). I do not enjoy being controlled by an alarm. I do not enjoy having to get to the station in time for my train. I do not enjoy prepping lunch in advance. The freedom of the previous two weeks had passed and I felt that sinking feeling in my stomach.

Monday was not as bad as my sinking stomach thought it would be.  Yes, it took me a while to prep the night before. Yes, it was tough to get out of bed.  Yes, I ended up running for the train.  But, dare I say it?  I actually enjoyed having some routine back in my life.  I at a nutritious breakfast and felt energized for the day.  Lunchtime rolled around and I ate a very colorful one (mixed salad and kebab).  My two weeks of freedom meant all my regular planning had been thrown out the window.  I just ate what was on hand when I was hungry and, shockingly, it was not always the best choice.  Routine has allowed me to start making good choices again.  Before I knew it the end of the work day had come.  I smiled as I sat on the train because it was not that bad after-all.

My staycation reminded me to enjoy all the freedoms I have without allowing events I can’t control to take over my mind.  I must enjoy the moment because tomorrow will always come, whether or not I like what is coming.

2015 is around the corner.  I’m going to work on finding more opportunities to feel free, and to let go of feelings about the future that hold me back today.

Have a safe and wonderful new year celebration everyone!  And remember, enjoy the moment!



Sprint to May Challenge (STMC)

Sprint To May Challenge

Click here for the STMC official page

The Challenge
I was pointed to the Sprint to May Challenge by a fellow blogger.  I read about the challenge and knew it was something I just had to do!  It’s a challenge to yourself to work towards your goals to be healthier while at the same time (and this is the awesome part) connecting with, and supporting, other bloggers who are just like you!  All the people who have signed up for the challenge are on the path to a healthier life.  As part of the challenge there will be mini-challenges and achievements to reach for.  It’s going to be fun and, best of all, we’ll be able to share our successes while supporting one another through those tough moments.

One thing that sets this challenge apart from other challenges I’ve come across is that it’s getting healthier by doing what works best for you – not by following a particular diet or workout plan.  You just do what’s best for you, and will learn what other people are doing, which you may want to incorporate into your plan.  It’s a win-win situation!

All the people who join the challenge are asked to do a bio … so here goes!

My bio
I’m a female in my early 30s.  I have needed to lose weight from as far back as I can remember.  I struggled for years to find what worked for me and, last year, I think I finally found it – Paleo.  I completed Whole30 in early 2013.  The weight fell off and I felt fantastic.  Unfortunately, I let things slip and by summer 2013 all my old bad habits had somehow found their way back into my life (and the weight came back on).  I let work take over and didn’t focus on “me” for the rest of 2013.  In addition to being overweight I have PCOS – I hope that getting healthier will help minimize the issues I face with PCOS.

I have been going to the gym for about 5 years.  The last few weeks I haven’t gone as often as I’d like (should!), sometimes only once or twice a week.  I also need to focus on my food again – need to get back to clean eating (the holiday season did not help)!  I’m ready to focus on “me” again by taking part in this challenge.

My goals for the Sprint to May Challenge are:

  • Consistency at the gym (4 times per week: 3 weight sessions, 1 spin class)
  • Clean eating – following Paleo guidelines
  • Start to practice yoga again to lower my stress levels (work my way up to at least 10 minutes a day)
  • Leg press: 585lbs – set of 8 (currently leg press 495lbs – set of 12)
  • Push-ups: 20 full push-ups in one go (currently at 6)
  • Bench press: A set of 5 at 95lbs (currently can do a set of 12 at 75lbs)
  • Lose 20lbs from my “weight start date” (I’ll be taking a photo of my weight at some point in next few days and that will be what I measure from)

Come join me!
There’s still time to join  – who’s going to join me?!  Sign up by Jan 15.  Lets support and encourage each other, and maybe even have some healthy competition, while we work towards achieving our resolutions.

Final note

I will be leaving town in a few days for some charity work, and am not back until Jan 18.  I will have limited internet access so if I don’t interact for a few days that’s why!  Best of luck to everyone participating in the challenge – we can do it! 🙂


It’s that time of the year: New Year’s Resolutions

Yes.  That time.  The time where you think about New Year’s resolutions.  If you’re not thinking about it then every magazine cover you read (as you’re paying for your healthy food for Jan – we ALL eat healthy food in Jan right?!), and every person you meet will remind you to think about it.

Every year my resolution is the same.  To lose weight.  For as long as I can remember I’ve ‘needed’ to lose weight.  Even as a kid my resolution was to lose weight.  I look back at pictures and realize that actually I didn’t need to lose weight.  It was all in my head.  It didn’t help that the impression everyone gave was that I needed to lose weight (“you are so pretty, all you have to do is lose weight” – but that’s a rant for another time).

Anyway, getting back to my point today – I don’t know about you, but I’m sick and tired of thinking about losing weight.  I know that it is something I need to do – I do want to lead a long and healthy life after all.  However, it should not be the only thing I think about when I think about what I want to achieve. Health is not just about weight.  Mental health is important too.

I do not want negative people in my life anymore.  They make me mad, sad, stressed or all of the above.  Gone are the days where I have the need to feel popular.  I just want people in my life that I trust and make me happy when I’m around them.  I do not want to make time anymore for people who clearly do not have time for me.  I moved to Canada from another country almost 7 years ago.  I have reached out again and again to ‘friends’ and I got tired of being the first to reach out so I gave it a break.  It’s amazing how many people I lost contact with.  Like most people, I spend most of my waking life at work – I want to enjoy whatever other time I have.

Some people say resolutions are a waste of time.  You stick with it for a month or two maybe and then it’s back to the same old habits.  I disagree. It’s not a waste of time to focus on areas where you can improve yourself and your life. That is what we are doing right?  We believe that our life will improve if we achieve our resolution.

So think about what you want to focus on.  What one thing will improve your life?  What do you need to do to accomplish your resolution?  Put your resolution, with the steps you need to accomplish it, somewhere where you will see it every day.  We are not perfect and some days we won’t do any the steps to reach our resolution (in fact, we might even do the opposite!). However, being conscious of our resolution, and knowing what we need to do to reach our goal, will help us get there.  It’s so important to make sure you know what steps you have to take to achieve your resolution.

My resolution for 2014 is to be a healthier version of me by this time next year.  These are the top 10 things I need to do to get there (in no particular order):

1. Follow Paleo guidelines to nourish my body

2. Stick to my exercise program

3. Remove negative people from my life

4. Make time to spend more time with those I enjoy the company of and feel good around

5.  Appreciate the things I have rather than stressing over the things I want

6.  Learn to love me for me – any improvement should be a bonus

7.  Realize that work should be left at work.  Do not bring the stress home.

8.  Do not focus on things I can’t control – focus on what I can control

9. Do not punish myself if I have a bad day – just forget about it and move on

10.  Last, but not least – get more massages!

On a final note – life is too short.  I’m a huge Schumacher fan and as I write this he is fighting for his life.  He is a fighter and I hope he pulls through.  My thoughts are with his family and friends at this very difficult time.  Life can change in a split second.  Don’t take any of those seconds for granted – don’t waste any of those seconds.  As you hear the New Year bells chime take a breath and remember – you are alive.  This is your life, your moment your second.

Happy New Year everyone!