Sunday, October 08, 2017


Let's call it the end of a very, very long week 23, shall we?

It's been a crazy, great summer, though. And even with not staying on plan - or anywhere near it, really! - I've maintained the weight loss I had at the end of March.

Some highlights -

April, of course, we got married.  He left one job and then went back but on our terms.  No more opening shifts and 2 set days off per week, cross-training and raises, and supervisor training.  Which lasted not so long, of course.  While they never scheduled him opening again, his hours were all over the place between 7am and 5pm, and anywhere from 15-40 hours.  He was one of the few that were supposed to get no less than 30 hours per week period.  And those 2 set days off?  Happened maybe 4 weeks total.

May - we got the Nutri Ninja and I love it for my shakes.  I add a handful of spinach, a touch of vanilla extract, and then if it's the strawberry shake I add some sugar-free strawberry syrup because otherwise I can't really drink it - it's not my favorite.  If I have the vanilla shake then I'll add caramel syrup (sugar-free) and powdered peanut butter.  I haven't used it nearly as much as I should be, though.

June was rough for me - I had to realize that I just couldn't do my coaching sessions over the phone on my lunch breaks anymore.  There have been changes at work and they're not being quite as flexible about schedule changes - holding the non-phone people to the phone scheduling system (which can literally change your break time during your shift!).  But I do have the local branch now and I started going there and I really like my new coach.

July - 2 birthdays (including a 40th!) and still with the hot weather.  I can't walk outside in the heat hardly at all so I spent my breaks sitting.  I can tell, too.  I'm stiff and achy again.  I did go see a personal trainer twice and realized I am definitely stronger than I think!  I'm right around average to above average (except in sit-ups, ha!).  He had me use a TRX system the first time and I loved it.  The second session was a punching bag and medicine ball - and I loved that too!  (I think I like aggressive outlets....haha)

August - yeah, more heat.  Oh, and the Farmer's Market?  On the one day we can go, they have almost no actual produce but a few vendors with things like jams, kettlecorn, and a few other things I don't remember.  It was super disappointing for us.  I'm sure they probably had more things on the other days/hours they were open - but we couldn't get there so it didn't help us much.  We've been hitting Safeway, though, and their produce is pretty good in general.

September flew by.  I'd go on and off plan - and finally just took the month.  I cancelled my coaching sessions and did some digging around and thinking and I feel like I've sorted some things out.  The biggest thing is that I'm not beating myself up over "falling off the wagon."  It happened, but I still had learned some things and am listening to my body a lot more.  I  bit the bullet and ordered "DDPYoga" - because this video is so inspiring:

I also made the decision to start walking 1 mile twice a day - when I wake up and before I go to bed.  So I got the okay from Dad to move the coffee table into the back room.  I'll use my WATP dvds for the walking - I'll alternate days with DDPYoga with resistance band strength training.

I also disabled my Facebook account - and a month later I'm not missing it one bit.  AND my husband finally left that other job for good.  He got an offer at a wooden toy manufacturer, tried to talk to his manager to give her two weeks' notice and she kept blowing him off, so after 2 days (the amount of time he told the new employer he would get back to him with a start date) - he finished out that week's schedule and quit.  And it felt so good....for all of us!  He's now working M-F 8-430, what a blessing!

So October - we're 8 days in and where am I?  Well, October first we did this:

From the Crazy Horse Memorial websiteThe bi-annual Crazy Horse Volksmarch (an organized hike) is a 10K or 6.2-mile woodlands ramble to the world’s largest mountain carving in progress in the southern Black Hills of South Dakota.

It was definitely a challenge and towards the end of the uphill climb I think I was stopping every 50 feet or so.  The level part coming back wasn't much better - my feet HURT.  But I DID IT.  And I used the exercise tracking option on my FitBit and it said I did it in 4 hours.  I had a feeling it would take that long - and I'm not at all disappointed.  It's a HIKE.

So - I will try to get back to weekly posts - there's some Skoolie updates, too - slow progress but progress!  He's framing now and once that is all figured out the rest should go fairly quickly.  And I have to go find the clearance lights!

Until next time!

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Week 23 Profile by Sanford


So, I was still pretty off-plan this last week although I did make some better choices, such as taking advantage of Panera's Rapid Pick Up service - I'd order a customized salad on the app and schedule it to be ready when I dropped my husband off and there was my lunch!  It's been hard finding and keeping decent salads/mixes at home lately....

Up a bit this week - understandable as there's not been a lot of walking and not getting all my water in most days either.

So back to the walking I must get!  I found some great beginner resistance tube workouts on Pinterest and when my husband gets home this afternoon we're going to talk about food and exercise.  He's been wanting to get back on his bicycle and I would like to get back on mine as well.  It's been really hard for him - he's used to bicycling everywhere and hasn't been able to do much at all since we got here a bit over a year ago.  There are some local people on the Profile Facebook group and we're hoping to schedule a weekly meetup at Planet Fitness - I think that will be fun!

My coach and I finally reconnected this week; it feels like it's been forever since we've talked!  And she was kind of sly in putting in the, "You don't think you can make yourself a priority?" in the conversation.  And she's right.  My biggest issue, I thought, was that I don't like a lot of vegetables.  So we agreed that veggies would be my focus this week.  So I took out my Profile guide out and wrote down a list of veggies I like, veggies that I'm "meh" about, and veggies I'd like to try.  It's a bit of a long list!  But Friday, as we were at the grocery store getting things together for a Father's Day picnic, I realized what is probably more of the problem.  I wanted to make rollups instead of sandwiches for myself and for that I needed romaine lettuce.  Granted, we only went to that big box store we all know and dislike, and so that might have been part of it.  But of the 7 or 8 packages of romaine, all had brown tips, bug holes, and slimy spots (and 1 ladybug!).  So I'm wondering if it's more of a "I like veggies but can't find decent produce!" thing?  So I'm busily pinning recipes (and if you have any suggestions, please post them below!) and what I might do is make a "master list" to take to the Farmer's Market Tuesday night.  Then for at least a few days I can have good veggies and may have to figure out leftovers and frozen or tricks (like spinach in the strawberry shake!) for the rest of the week.

So goals this week are to get strength training in 3 days a week, bike with my husband 2-3 days a week, meet up at PF 1 day a week, and walk on all my breaks!

On the Skoolie front, they got the flooring in!  We went with a hardwood laminate and then opted to lay it sideways instead of length-wise and we're all pretty tickled with it!

My husband has sketched in wall framing and we got 1 more package of hardwood flooring (but a different style that was less expensive) - we were short about 10 square feet to also do under the bed so we'll use up the flooring above and put the new flooring where it won't be visible along the walls.  Easy finish option as it will all be level and no hard thought required!!  Those first 2 open spaces on the right (well, the corner of the first one!) are where the benches will go for the dinette.  Then the floored section after is where the sink/Panda washing machine/water heater will go.  Then bathroom area.  That black stock tank is our shower tub!!  And it's back by where the bed will go.  Coming back down, the wheel well you can see on the left will be where the closet will be built, then fridge, cooktop, and new countertop oven we decided would be better than our toaster oven, countertop, and then a quasi-entertainment center - it will be countertop that sits lower than the kitchen countertop (level with the bottom of the windows, whereas the kitchen countertop will be taller and a more workable working height) and will be where a TV or computer monitor will go, and will hold games and home office supplies and probably some of our art stuff, too.  Getting there!!  With more of a set schedule, hopefully they can get a lot more progress done and soon so we can give it a good test!!

My little Ukulele loom came in from Windhaven Fiber Tools last Friday!!  I'm still waiting on the Accordian loom, but this little guy is such fun!!  Dad made the jig for me once I determined the best length heddle to make and hopefully the piece of scrap wood we selected is long enough for the Accordian heddles too - but if not, we can always find more scrap wood!!  Then I'll get corks to put over the tops of the nails to prevent hurting anyone accidentally!

And in the short amount of time I've had it, I've gone from this:
To this:

And last night I was working on this:

So I've definitely been having fun with that!  There's some fun tablet weaving patterns I want to try but I'm afraid that unless I made 1-inch tablets/cards, it's not at all feasible with this little guy!  (Doesn't mean I won't try later on!)  But there are some lovely patterns out there and I've got plenty to play with!

Until next time!


Sunday, June 11, 2017

Weeks 19-22 Profile by Sanford

Wow - time has flown!  We've had birthdays, holidays, sickness, accidents, and family visits.  Job changes, job changes again, and hot hot weather!  I think we literally went from still running the wood stove to where's the air conditioner in less than 24 hours at one point!

I have been as off-plan as off-plan can get, too.  I've maintained the weight loss, though, which says a lot as previously I've always gained it back after being off-plan for so long. That tells me that the mental side of it is kicking in and I'm making better choices.

In there I had my birthday and Memorial Day and Mother's Day...all bad for the waistline if you let them!  Last week I had a cold bad enough to keep me home from work for 2 days and still coughing a week later.  But finally feeling mostly back to normal.  That means, of course, not a lot of walking has been happening because it was really  hard to breathe.  My Fitbit stats reflect that a little bit - for brevity I'm only posting the most recent week:

But I'm already ansty to get back to walking and you can see by Monday and Tuesday I was ready to go!  I've purchased some resistance bands from Profile by Sanford and will be adding strength training to me repertoire somehow.  That's part of today's tasks, to figure that out!

On the weight loss front, I'm not quite to Twodorland but I'm super close!!

For reference:

That's a whole lotta fast food!!

My sister-in-law's parents are in town and we had a lovely visit with them, going to Bear Country, USA and then lunch at Famous Dave's - and I think the 3 ladies were the only ones who weren't regretting eating there!  I had the catfish fingers (breaded and fried but not greasy which is nice!) and garlic mashed potatoes and 1 corn bread muffin.  I was satisfied without having gone overboard.

Earlier this week we were in a 4-car accident - thankfully no serious injuries!  Everyone walked away!  One lady did get checked over by the EMTs but she went home with her daughter and her other daughter drove that car home - although I'm sure it's a total loss.  We were at an intersection, fully stopped, waiting for the SUV in front of us to turn left and she was waiting for oncoming traffic to open up so she could do so safely.  A pickup that had been jacked up and "tricked out" rear-ended car #1, pushing that into car #2, pushing car #2 into our rear end, lifting it and moving us forward 2 feet.  We have an '02 Durango, not a light vehicle at all, and again, fully stopped, brakes fully engaged.  Car #1 was crumpled, multiple fluids leaking, but driver was safe.  Car #2 rear end was crumpled, and passenger side fender was crumpled.  Both will most likely be considered a total loss by insurance.  We sustained minor damage - the hitch we just put on a few weeks ago needs to be replaced as does the bumper and bumper assembly.  But it's drive-able, the parts will be in in a few days, and it will be back to the way it was.  The advantages of a good solid vehicle!  We did go to Urgent Care and get checked out - my brother had literally just gotten off the plane coming home from a conference and he came to follow us over to make sure we were good and the Durango was good.  Yay brother to the rescue! ☺

I did purchase a Nutri Ninja with Auto-iQ so I can start making my shakes into smoothies, including adding spinach to the strawberry one.  I had a gift card yet from Christmas to use which helped - but since I'd killed the store-brand version when we were in Ohio, I figured a Ninja should serve me well!

Things should be getting back on track - more so now that we've ironed some things out with my husband's employer.  He took a leave of absence (they didn't want him to quit when he found a different job - that job didn't work out as well as we'd hoped) and agreed to come back on our terms - no more opening and specific hours availability, and basically set days off unless absolutely necessary.  He also wanted some recognition for the fact that the majority of the customer comments/compliments mention him by name, that he's the only one who has yet to call off since they opened, he has the experience others don't but is still stuck at the cash register.  So he received training to become a trainer and is in line for supervisor training, finally.  That means I can schedule things accordingly - like meeting local Profile people once a week.  And it means being able to schedule workout times for strength training.

Until next time!


Sunday, May 14, 2017

Week 18 on Profile by Sanford

Again, my Profile weeks run from Wednesday to Tuesday, since I started on a Wednesday. So this is from May 3through May 9, 2017. I do tend to get discombobulated a bit so while the weight/measurements run those weeks, what I write about may not. :-)

This week as all up in the air - I took Thursday and Friday off, partly for my birthday and partly to get some work done on the Skoolie.  Friday was also a 5th grade entrepreneur fair - my nephew had designed desk water bottle holders last year and so this year he used those as his product.  If I'm remembering correctly, each student had to have a product, determine cost to make it, apply for a loan from the school, obtain a "business license" from the school, and pay a fee for space, make the products, and sell them.  Any profit they made was theirs to keep.  The fair was open to the public and there were some really cool ideas!!  

So Thursday and Friday mornings my husband and I tinted most of the windows on the Skoolie.  Friday afternoon was the school fair, and then we went to our favorite Mexican restaurant for supper and had birthday cake.  Saturday was a lay-about day.  Just not a lot of oomph.  :-)  Today we got all but the back door and 2 corner windows tinted - we need one more roll of tint.  

Last Saturday we went to Custer State Park - we took Needles Highway down there and he got to see the Needles Eye - as a rock hound, he was tickled with that whole bit.  Then we took the wildlife loop through the park - and those buffalo calves are sure cute as they're learning to use their legs!  The burros were happy to eat the chips we brought, as always, and even the prairie dogs and antelope made an appearance!  We took Iron Mountain Road back to Hill City via Keystone and had a drink at the winery where he works.  All in all, a very lovely day (and a very not-so-lovely sunburn on my left arm....oops!!)

So, here are the numbers - again, not worried, not going to fret - learning to just go with it.  I know that trying to stick to plan 100% of the time isn't going to work for me and I know that my numbers will show that.  I strive for 95% and am happy at 80% - and that's about what you do at maintenance levels, depending on who you talk to.  Part of the program is learning to overcome the mental obstacles and the striving for perfection is the hardest one for me.

Those weekends and my steps...we need to learn to dance better!!  :-)

Until next week!!


Sunday, May 07, 2017

Week 17 on Profile by Sanford

Again, my Profile weeks run from Wednesday to Tuesday, since I started on a Wednesday. So this is from April 26 through May 2, 2017. I do tend to get discombobulated a bit so while the weight/measurements run those weeks, what I write about may not. :-)

While not perfect, I did much better about staying on plan this week.  There were still a couple of Panera mornings but overall, much better and much more conscious of what I was eating when I was off plan.  And it showed:

I'm pretty tickled with that.  And, because it's the start of a new month, here are measurements, which won't be too unchanged from a couple of weeks ago:

Still, there is some loss and I'll take it, for sure and for certain.  It is a bit frustrating to still be ordering the same size clothes but then I remember, they actually fit now, versus too tight and never getting worn.  In fact, I bought 2 pairs of cropped jeans for summer last week and the one pair is already able to be pulled off without unzipping...and I'd bought them one size smaller than usual.  The pair in the store were a bit snug - the pair we had to order is the pair that are a bit loose!  So, a wonderful NSV (non-scale victory) there!  And, just to remind myself of the body composition changes - I'm wearing the same tank top in these pictures but clearly not the same pants.  When I tried on the other pair of crop pants and looked at myself in the mirror, I was kind of gobsmacked at the difference in side view of my legs.  

Definitely progress!!

And this week's FitBit stats:

A couple of decreases but overall, an improvement!  The weekly challenge among some of my FitBit friends has helped, along with the overall weather, and one friend at work who walks over to my desk to tell me what she saw of me walking on my morning break - be it that she really likes my shirt or that she noticed I didn't have as much "pep in my step" and wanting to make sure I was okay.  Thank you, sweetie!!

This is our last week of 3am wake-up calls - yes!!  And only 4 days - his last day at Panera is the Thursday, we're taking Friday off to spend with family, and he starts the winery Saturday.  Well, officially starts - he's worked the last 2 Fridays for a couple of events they had.  We'll be doing almost a complete turn-around in schedule as my new schedule will be 9:30am-6:00pm (versus 6:30am-3:00pm) and his will vary from 10am-6pm, 11am-7pm, or 12pm-8pm+closing duties.  My intent is to still wake up relatively early - 6am - and do a quick walk/hike/strength-training before we head out - I'll be dropping him off in Hill City by 8:45am to ensure I can get to work in Rapid City by 9:30am.  The first week will get us some time frames worked out but then it will be smooth sailing!

So, until next week!


Sunday, April 30, 2017

Week 16 on Profile by Sanford

Again, my Profile weeks run from Wednesday to Tuesday, since I started on a Wednesday. So this is from April 19 through April 25, 2017. I do tend to get discombobulated a bit so while the weight/measurements run those weeks, what I write about may not. :-)

What a rough month and, consequently, week.  Let's just get these numbers over with, shall we?

Uff da.  But, in looking back, I've been off plan far more than on plan, I'm afraid.  And it shows - no loss this month.  In fact, 2/10 of a pound in gain.  BUT for all the off-plan, I'm impressed that that's all the gain I had.  I would almost say it's more of a maintenance than a gain.  We ended up eating out a couple of times and that doesn't help, of course.  No excuses, but things to remember for the future.

Getting steps in has been interesting with this crazy South Dakota weather!  We woke up to snow TWICE this week and it was cold/rainy all week long.

Walking in the winter coat that didn't zip up at Christmas!


Windy day!!!

But I did it - even on the weekends!! 

And I think it was Tuesday - but it might have been Wednesday or Thursday after these stats - it was raining out on my first break and I really didn't want to walk outside - and I really didn't want to walk around the break room as that's when a lot of people are just getting in to work and getting their coffee, etc.  Then I remembered! Leslie Sansone, of WATP (Walk Away The Pounds), has some workouts on her YouTube channel - including a couple of 5-minute ones!  So I went upstairs (and walked up the stairs, no elevator!!) to a quiet area rarely frequented, hit play, and went for it!  Then back down the stairs, across the building to the breakroom to get my blender bottle (I fill those with water when I first get to work and put them in the fridge) and back to my desk.  My goal for the next month is to hit that step goal every weekend too, then increase it by a factor of 10%.  Even though I'm hitting it during the week, weekends seems to be a bear for me.  No structure, no schedule is hard for me.  

And while there was no weight loss this month, there's still things to be proud of.  Those steps, for example.  Feeling more energetic as a general rule (not counting the being so tired from getting up at 3am for his job).  Going to my new favorite store, Torrid, and buying denim capris a size smaller.  Flappy jeans when I'm walking (which amuses me to no end!).  (Flappy jeans - the material flaps as I walk because it's so loose.)  And ALL my jeans can now be taken off without unbuttoning or unzipping.  That's even the pair that was still snug a couple of weeks ago.  So while measurements haven't been changing much, weight loss has been stalled, things are really looking up.

For example, blood pressure.  Ideally, it should be between 90/60 and 120/80.  January 3rd it was 143/84.  I take this with the proverbial grain of salt because I was definitely feeling dehydrated that morning (we'd spent the night in a very warm hotel room the night before and I was doing fasting blood work that morning as well) and the nurse had tried 3 times with an arm cuff before switching to a wrist cuff.  Still, kind of scary.  I've been regularly checking it Wednesday evenings and this last week it was at 123/62.  It ranges up to the 130s over 80s, and sometimes higher if I forget to sit still during the reading or forget to wait a few minutes after coming upstairs.  But I like these numbers.  The beginning of July I plan on getting the blood work done again to see how that has changed also.

Other news - there are only 11 more days of waking up before the crack of dawn!!  My husband got a job at one of the winery/breweries in Hill City.  It will mean a fair bit more driving and a lot more meal planning - but it will get us on a more normal biorhythm, too.  My goal is on nice days to go walking/biking outside and on yucky days to stop at Planet Fitness before going to pick him up.  I was able to switch my schedule from 6:30am-3:00pm to 9:30am-6:00pm.  The earliest his shift ends will be 6:00pm so this will work out nicely.  I'm mentally planning larger breakfasts and lunches which will also help with sleeping at night.

Skoolie news - insulation is in!

That pile is what is left plus one more roll - and let me tell you what: even with the cold weather we had, the temperature difference inside the Skoolie is noticeable.  In just a t-shirt and jeans I was almost comfortable.  Hard to believe, isn't it?  Definitely a good investment and a great score!  (Regular price would have been $350 and he got it for $35!!)

We thought we had an on-demand water heater but on closer viewing it's a hot water dispenser - meaning it has a tiny tank inside for providing hot water for a cup of coffee or tea.  Not what we need at all!  So we're going to test it anyway and if it works sell it.  We had one in mind anyway so now it's a matter of looking at budget for that and what else we need right now to start framing around.  I think the water heater/plumbing are the only two issues.  

So, until next week!!


Sunday, April 23, 2017

Week 15 with Profile by Sanford

Again, my Profile weeks run from Wednesday to Tuesday, since I started on a Wednesday. So this is from April 12 through April 18, 2017. I do tend to get discombobulated a bit so while the weight/measurements run those weeks, what I write about may not. :-)

As mentioned last week, I will no longer be tracking body measurements weekly.  The next measurements will be taken on May 3rd.  Instead, I'll be adding my Fitbit stats up here.  This past week a friend invited me to a Workweek Hustle challenge and I was within a few hundred steps of one of her friends most of the week - but he pulled ahead by a couple of thousand on Thursday.  Next week, good man, next week!  😅

Weekends are still the bane of my walking existence but I'm getting there!  My daily goal right now 4,000 steps per day.  I've re-started walking on my morning and afternoon breaks and added walking on my lunch break.  That definitely makes hitting that goal easy, as evidenced by Monday and Tuesday!!  

Weight/BMI stats for this week:

Not a lot of change but Saturday we had our Easter dinner - and with good ham comes lots of sodium.  This isn't something I'm going to fret over - but definitely need to refocus.  Which I've said how many weeks now?  😖  A big challenge this week was.....vegetables.  I was so over vegetables this week.  My favorite, riced cauliflower with peas, carrots, and green onions and I couldn't eat them.  After talking to my coach Thursday, I went out to the food truck (I'm fortunate in that my employer allows local vendors to set up shop for lunches) and got their cheese salad.  We're talking the basics, here.  Iceberg lettuce, shredded cheddar, and their house ranch (they do cajun foods as a specialty) and talk about hitting the spot.  So Friday I brought a similar salad to work as well.  There's also been some Panera goings-on for breakfast Friday and Saturday, so I definitely have some work to do.  

Saturday I went in to town with my husband so I could pick up a bit more overtime.  I had a seasonal greens salad at Panera for lunch and tweaked it a bit.  I'm not sure I'll ever be able to eat raw kale....haha  He had a "working interview" Saturday afternoon and we ate in Hill City again.  He'd had the initial application and chat Friday night and we splurged by eating at the Alpine Inn.  The menu consists of 6-ounce or 9-ounce filet mignon, iceberg wedge, house dressing, baked potato and Texas toast.  Nice and simple, yes?  Well.....until you get the dessert menu!  If you're ever in Hill City, SD, you must check them out.  But get there early - the lines form quickly!!

Saturday night we chose a different restaurant and opted for a buffalo/elk burger.  Yum!!  But it was also 8 ounce, plus the bun, plus sweet potato fries, and dessert.  I really, really should have eaten only half and boxed the rest - I was physically uncomfortable the rest of the night.  But his "working interview" seemed to go really well and perhaps there will be news on that front next week.

In other news, I have a cousin getting married this fall and so I've started to crochet one of my favorite afghans.  It's the Very Victorian by Maggie Weldon.  So his socks and my shrug are on a back burner again!  But not for long - I crochet fairly quickly.  I am using my new Trindle drop spindle and get a little bit more spun now and again.  I'm hoping there will be time soon to get my weaving/spinning bench built so I can get my spinning wheel out.  I'm working on a couple of alpaca/merino/silk blends that I'm hoping to spin into a fine yarn with which to weave a wrap on my Kromski Harp rigid heddle loom.  It's nice having a front patio to sit on, but I have to be able to sit!  My wheel sits a bit too tall for any standard chairs so we bought the supplies to build this bench and hopefully we can work on it this spring, along with a lazy kate for plying the singles I spin.

And, some Skoolie progress.  My husband was meandering Menards last weekend looking for insulation.  We had thought the foam boards we planned on using were a lot less expensive than they actually are - but he managed to find rolls of a wool blend for $2.50 a roll - the regular price is around $25!  He grabbed it all up - there was 14 rolls, and there's just a wee bit left.  The best part is it takes the R factor from 7 to 15 and he said when he and Dad were installing it you could already feel a difference.  Nice Skoolie Skore!!  We're very fortunate and grateful that Dad has, as a wedding gift, said we can stay in his driveway another year to test it all out rather than trying to find a place to park it in town.  I'm hoping we'll be "living" in it by June but there's still a lot of work to do.

Until next week!