Sunday, June 23, 2013

100 and my first giveaway!

No...I have not lost 100 pounds (but i have lost 75 but that's another post). There are other exciting things that have to do with the number 100 that we need to talk about!!

This little post right here, this is my 100th post on this blog! What started out documenting my PCOS journey to inform my family and friends so I didn't have to repeat the story over and over again has morphed into a blog about how I have changed my life!

Just before my shoulder surgery I hit another 100 100th barre3 class!!! It just so happened to coincide with two of my good friends from high school trip down to Vancouver! My best friend Bree and my mom ended up surprising me and coming to the class also. It was a very wonderful morning.

L to R: Kalli, Melanie, mom, Bree, me! I just realized that these ladies composed 50% of my bridesmaids!

Bree and her niece Maya made me this awesome banner! It says "100 BARRE 3's CONGRATS ANNIE". I was very overwhelmed by her thoughtfulness. It is always fun to introduce new people to Barre3. Kalli and Melanie were friends number 34 & 35 of people who I have brought to a barre3 class! Someday soon I'll get to 40 (in only two more people, as of today, for the record).

This is me in front of the 'flagship' Barre3 in the Pearl District in Portland, Oregon. Those nifty purple pants I'm rocking are my 70 pound weight loss reward!! One of my good friends Kim gave me a gift certificate to Athleta for my birthday and told me to wait until I hit a big milestone to spend it. I'm pretty much in love with my purple pants.

As you may have guessed I'm also very much in love with Barre3 and since it is my 100th post I wanted to do a little Barre3 giveaway*!!

Annie's barre3 giveaway*...
- One month online workout subscription
- One barre workout ball (I will mail it to you)
- The possibility of becoming addicted to barre3 :-)

- Anyone can enter. If you are from outside the US and it's too spendy to ship the barre ball to, you'll have to get your own! They're $9 on amazon.
- If you live in the Portland area and would rather have a gift certificate for one studio class (instead of the one month online subscription) we can arrange that!
- The giveaway will be closed at the end of the day on Sunday, June 30th, 2013. The drawing will be random!
- How to win - leave a comment in this post telling me your name and favorite body part of yours! I'm hoping this is enough info for me to get in touch with you if you win!!

*barre3 is not sponsoring this giveaway. I love this program so much I am paying for someone else to reap the benefits!

Fingers crossed {that the winner falls in love with Barre3}...

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

just down the hall.... one of my biggest inspirations!

My coworker Amy has been on her life style change for a few years now! She started her journey in the second half of 2010, Which is just about a year before me. Her beginning weight was within a couple of pounds of my beginning weight, so when I first started my journey it was very motivating to see someone who was as overweight as I was, could do it.

Amy is a weight watchers fanatic!! She loyally tracked every single day and now runs her own weight watchers meetings!! Amy lost her weight by eating correctly, talking to people about what she was learning, and by becoming a runner.

The pictures in the left-hand column are from our end of year staff retreat in June 2010. Amy says this is pretty much right before her tipping point. I still had a year and a half until my tipping point and I would bet I gained another 20-25 pounds from this picture when I was at my heaviest. From both of our heaviest we have lost 154 pounds combined!!! That's more than either of us weight now!

It's quite an awesome experience to have someone losing weight the healthy way who you work with. It's daily motivation.

Fingers crossed {that I continue to inspire others}...

Thursday, June 13, 2013

One foot in front of the other...

... All the way to the top!

There's been many times in my life where I've started a diet or a lifestyle change and not followed through. This time though I knew I had to! It really was about seeing those numbers, seeing the pictures and how I was feeling. 20 months ago I couldn't even walk up a flight of stairs without having to stop at the top and catch my breath. When I would try to run a mile I would have to stop for five times because I couldn't do it.

Last month I went on one of the most challenging hikes I've ever been on, with my best friend. We hiked Silverstar Mountain in Washington State. Funny part of the story, neither of us had really ever planned a day hike before. We'd always gone with our families who did the planning. We set up on our adventure to do what we thought was a 4 mile round-trip hike. Turns out that wasn't the parking lot that we ended up in... After hiking about 2 miles, which should've been the halfway/turn around point, we realize we had quite a while to go! My first thought was that there was no way I could do it. That's what I was used to thinking about myself.

At that 2 mile mark was also about when we hit the snow, which we were most definitely not expecting! After looking through the guidebook we realized the end of our hike was still over 2 miles away... you can see the trail we ended up following on the far hill to the left of that big pine tree. It was about this time that a big church group had caught up to us. There was about 20 of them and they were all around our age. We actually ended up pretty much joining their group which was a nice distraction.

All said, we hiked over 5 miles in the snow! It was during the snow walking that I really had to do a lot of self talk. My brain really wanted to give up for some reason but I knew my body was really able to handle it. I didn't want to give up because my best friend was with me and I didn't want to disappoint her, I didn't want to give up because I knew I would be proud when I made it to the top and back down. I wanted to see the view! I kept telling myself that my body was Barre3 strong. I have never been so proud of myself as to when I stepped on the summit of that mountain.

At the summit of Silverstar Mountain!

Bree and I With a few gorgeous mountains in the background!
Left to right: Mount Saint Helens, Mt. Rainier, Mt. Adams.

Thinking about a multitude of things. I remember thinking how astonishingly gorgeous it was and that if I had never lost this weight I probably would've never been at the top. When we were at the top of that Summit you could see five mountains of the Cascade Range. There was barely a cloud in the sky, it was a perfect day, and I proved to myself that I could do this. I quietly, and without anyone noticing, shed a couple of tears. I was just overwhelmed with the beauty, myself, and my friends determination and support to get me to the top of that mountain. Bree stopped with me every time I needed to stop, I knew that she truly was not judging me, and even over longlegs probably could've gone twice as fast she always let me keep the pace. I feel so fortunate to have a friend like her, not only because of this hike but in so many aspects of life she's been such a great support over the last 19 1/2 years. I hope that everyone who's going through any kind of struggle has a Bree in their life. Bree's been through a lot recently and I hope that I've been as much of a support to her as she has been to me!

Of course, once you go up you must go back down. The way down was almost more tough than the way up because we knew how far we had to go and it's really hard to walk downhill in the snow! There wasn't as much talking on the way down as on the way up and I don't really know why that is but I was okay with it. About halfway down my knees really started to hurt. Bree stuck at my slow, slow pace, even teaching me how to zigzag back and forth across the trail instead of just going straight down.

We were about 100 yards from the parking lot, Bree had literally just said "I can see the car" and I twisted my ankle! Unfortunately it wasn't on the same leg as my hurt me so I really just hobbled the rest of the way down. When I got home this is what happened...

You know what I love most about this picture, the smile on my face. I had just walked almost 10 miles, through snow and in pain. But I had done it.

Finger crossed {that once my shoulder heals we'll be back out hiking}...

Monday, June 10, 2013

season of the sling...

I had shoulder surgery last Wednesday and it's been deemed a success! I checked in at the bright and early time of 6 AM wearing my fanciest clothes!

Here's the outfit breakdown... Sheer hairnet covering a quadruple French braid, Classy glasses that I only usually wear from the bathroom to the bed, New aquamarine shirt, My hospital & allergy bracelet, Squirt the teddy bear, And last but certainly not least my Barre3 bracelet!!! Those last two items were my comfort items and I was so happy that the surgeons let me bring them into the operating room!

The results are in. It turns out that there was a tear in my posterior labrum. He fixed the tear and removed the cyst. Even though I wish I hadn't had to of had the surgery I'm very happy that it was an easy find and an easy fix!

I went home just a few hours after the surgery had started. My husband took Wednesday through Sunday off and was home with me the whole five days. He is truly amazing. I realize just how much I appreciate him. He was truly wonderful even when I was at my worst (aka deep in lala & pain land). I truly have a newfound respect for him and now know just how much he loves me. It's amazing when you slow down what you really find. My father-in-law and Penny sent me these gorgeous flowers which really helped put a smile on my face.

I spent the first four nights in five days basically in this position...

That's right, I slept in a recliner. Me, Who can't sleep on airplanes and used to always keep on my stomach, sat and slept solely in a recliner from Wednesday - Sunday night. I've actually got the entrance and exit from the recliner down pretty well! I set myself up with two TV trays to my right that have a variety of things that I needed during the day. So far I've watched over a season worth of Grey's Anatomy :) My hope is that this week once the pain pills go away I can read more and watch less.

On the second day I felt good enough to sit outside for about 20 minutes. On the third day I sat outside for an hour while we had friends over for dinner. I definitely feel like I am recovering quicker than I thought I would. I don't know if some of that has to do with the fact that I want to recover faster, or that my body was really strong before I went into surgery but whatever it is I'll take it! Today is day five post surgery and I'm only on one pain pill every six hours! I'm happy that everything seems to be running smoothly!!

Fingers crossed {that the positive healing trend continues}...