Oct 232014
 

It’s almost a given that on the heels of running a half, I’m itching to do another. I blame runners high and the endorphins. After I finished the Fountain Head Half in May (and once the soreness passed) I found myself searching for another race. A road half this time since Fountain Head was off road an that was a totally different ball game.

This time around I also wanted DH to be able to run with me. It’s fun to do those types of things as a couple (at least for us). So I had to find something close to one of the grands so we’d have kid coverage. Pittsburgh was too far off date wise so I was looking around Lancaster. I stumbled on Hershey and I’m so happy I did. How could you go wrong running through an amusement park and having a chocolate stop at mile 12?

I worked out perfectly. We left the kids with DH’s parents and drove the 45 min up to Hershey for the race.

It was an early morning because we had to pick up our packets prior to the race and of course Lia woke as we were trying to leave so we had to wake my MIL to hang with here. We arrived in Hershey just before 6am and scored what we thought was a primo spot right at the front (which turned out not to be – we waited a long time to leave!).

Packet pick up took 10 min which is good because at 6am it was COLD and blustery!! I worried that I had enough layers on to run this race. DH had brought trash bags to try to keep warm prior to the start of the race but unfortunately for him they were kitchen sized and he’s not. So, he had a trash bag scarf to wear – so not effective. Anyways, we ran back to the car and waited out the 90 min until the start in the comfort of our warm car.

Around 7:15 we made our way over for a quick potty stop but after 15 min in line we still weren’t even close to the front and the race had started so we abandoned that idea and just started to run. That was a fun first mile! Thankfully we were able to make a pit stop at mile 1 and continue on our way – much lighter.

The first 4 miles were pretty quick. We spent 2 working our way around the parking lots and Hersheypark drive and on into the park. We ran a mile through the park and then on out into some of the neighborhoods around Hershey. By mile 5 we hit a groove and things flew by. We ran past the country club which was really pretty.

Running down Chocolate Ave was cool – the road surface was actually brown. Then we ran into the campus for the Milton Hershey School. What was neat about this was that all the kids that live on campus there had come out of their houses and set up camp on the roadside to cheer people on. By the time we got around to them they had to have been there for at least and hour and were still excited and yelling. The had to be exhausted after the race was over!

The last 3 miles hurt pretty badly. My legs were done. I could feel the blisters on the feet and my knees were pretty sore but I looked at our time and realized that we could make this race under 2:20 if we kept up our pace. So I looked at DH and asked if he could push it for these last three. It was only 30 min…I can hurt for 30 min I kept thinking. So we kicked in whatever afterburner we had and tried to book it in under 2:20.

At the top of the hill at mile 12 there was chocolate which I thought I’d love but I was so parched that it was like chewing sand. Oh well…the little bit of sugar had a nice kick. As we rounded the stadium DH grabbed my hand thinking we could cross together holding hands…only, we still had about .2 miles to go. He was a little premature in his celebration.

The last .1 or so was around and into the stadium. That’s the fastest I think I’ve ever run. I left it all on that track (my GPS said I was an 8:30 pace which for me is crazy fast!). Crossing the finish line and looking up to see 2:22 on the clock was a little disappointing (I totally forgot that that was total time elapsed – not my time) but a good show none the less considering how much we trained. It wasn’t until I checked my email as we sat down to stretch that I saw we actually came in under 2:20:) 2:19 and a few milliseconds. Not a PR but one of my better times (my RnR race was 2:19 as well). I was definitely happy with that race.

We milled about for a bit cooling down and refueling. We took a few pictures but were anxious to get back to the kids so we headed out. It took about 45 min just to get out of the parking lot but once we were through (and a quick Dunkin stop) we were on our way home.

The rest of the day was rough – we still had to drive back to DC so when we all passed out at 9:30pm I was not surprised. It only took a few days for the soreness to go away which is good – I have to get back on the training wagon – Richmond is in 3 weeks!!

(and just so I have this somewhere…)
3/22/2009 VA Beach Shamrock Half (pre kids – trained to 8) – 2:15
5/15/2011 Pittsburgh Half (A year after Noah’s birth – trained to 8) – 2:20
5/5/2013 Pittsburgh Half (9 months after Lia’s birth – no training) – 2:40
3/15/2014 Rock and Roll USA (first half by myself – trained to 11mi) – 2:19
5/18/2014 Fountainhead Off-Road Half (first trail half – totally different ball game) – 2:49
10/14/2014 Hershey Half (trained to 8) – 2:19
11/15/2014 Richmond Half – shooting for 2:15!!

Oct 222014
 

I can’t believe we’re to 45 days already with this thing. I’m so much less focused on it because it’s just part of the day now. Get home. Feed Family. Put kids to bed. Go work out. Same routine most nights.

I’m still seeing results which is astonishing since my eating has been CRAP lately! I suppose I could see more if I actually ate right.

Anyways – no pics this time – just don’t have enough hands or time to do it. But I’ll update the measurements.

Starting Measurements:
Waist – 30 in
Hips – 37.75 in
Chest – 33.5 in
Thigh – 20.75 in
Bicep – 10.5 in
Calf – 14.25 in

Day 30 Measurements:
Waist – 29 in (-1)
Hips – 36.75 in (-1)
Chest – 33 in (-.5)
Thigh – 21 in (+.25)
Bicep – 10.5 in (0)
Calf – 14.25 in (0)

Day 45 Measurements:
Waist – 28.75 in (-.25)
Hips – 36.5 in (-.25)
Chest – 32.5 in (-.5)
Thigh – 20.5 in (-.5)
Bicep – 10.75 in (+.25)
Calf – 14 in (-.25)

So, downward progress. I lost 1 lb as well putting me at a total of 7 lbs from the start of all this. Honestly I’d love to lose another 10 but I’ll settle for another 5:) But that’s going to take some serious commitment on the eating front of which I seem to be lacking lately.

We still have the second half of this challenge so here’s to recommitting and trying to move the needle even further.

Oct 082014
 

So we’re already through the first month of round 2 of the Bikini Body Mommy program! I can’t believe how fast things have flown. I have to admit that I’ve not been as focused on this challenge as I was the last one. Just lots going on plus I’m trying to train for 2 half marathons this fall so I’ve had to mix things up.

That said, I am making sure to work out 6 times a week and would say 90% of the time it’s with Brianna’s videos. I generally do the strength days and then on the HIIT cardio days, I do my runs. On the days that I cant get a run in then I’ll do the prescribed HIIT cardio work out. So far it’s worked out and I’m seeing results. My clothes fit better again and I just generally feel more healthy

Starting Measurements:
Waist – 30 in
Hips – 37.75 in
Chest – 33.5 in
Thigh – 20.75 in
Bicep – 10.5 in
Calf – 14.25 in

Day 30 Measurements:
Waist – 29 in (-1)
Hips – 36.75 in (-1)
Chest – 33 in (-.5)
Thigh – 21 in (+.25)
Bicep – 10.5 in (0)
Calf – 14.25 in (0)

So – not as drastic as the first time around but I attribute that to a bunch of things.

1. I didn’t have that much more to go like I did the first time (those last 5 lbs are stubborn!).
2. I bumped up to heavier weights so I’m building some muscle in my arms (hello bicep definition).
3. I’m running a lot which builds the muscle in my legs
4. My nutrition has not been on point lately. Not that it’s bad – overall we’ve shifted for the better but I’ve let myself have a few indulgences as of late.

Time to buckle down in the next 30 and see if I can get those last few pounds off and tone up my arms and back.

Maybe I’ll take pics that I can share with everyone at the next check in… this time I’m too lazy:)

It’s never too late to get started! If you’re interested in joining us, let me know. We have a great support group on Facebook!!

Sep 162014
 

Last week we started another round of the Bikini Body Mommy 90 day challenge ! Since it worked so well the first time, I’m trying it again. The big difference this time is trying to work in half marathon training into the schedule (like replacing at least 2 or my HIIT cardio workouts with runs…we’ll see).

The program consists of 6 days a week of short high intensity workouts that alternate between cardio and strength. They’re generally under 25 min which is totally digestible when the only time you have to do them is after the kids are in bed – at 9:30pm!

They have check in’s every 15 days and encourage you to stay off the scale in the mean time (did you know that your weight can swing as much as 5 lbs in either direction in a short period due to water retention etc..)

Starting Measurements:
(they’re pretty much my ending measurements of the first challenge…)
Waist – 30 in
Hips – 37.75 in
Chest – 33.5 in
Thigh – 20.75 in
Bicep – 10.5 in
Calf – 14.25 in

If anyone is interested in joining our Facebook group, let me know. We have a great group of gals who are working together to encourage each other to keep going and pushing hard!!

Aug 132014
 

To catch everyone up – 90 (well…101 as of this writing) days ago, I started the Bikini Body Mommy challenge with a few girlfriends. The workouts were 20 min, 6 days a week and alternated between HIIT Cardio and Strength Training. The premise was that you pushed yourself hard for those 20 min and gave it everything you had and while the calorie burn was not huge, over the week it adds up. Combine it with clean/smart eating and you have a recipe for weight loss and improved health!

I’m so proud to say that I made it through the entire 90 days without missing a workout. Last day of the challenge was the day we were driving to the beach so I actually finished on Sunday. But I still finished strong! It actually felt weird while we were on vacation to not be taking the time each night to tune in and sweat (no fear – we did enough during the day between boogie boarding, walking, running, and bike riding to make up for it).

My last week of the challenge my nutrition was all over the place so I think the final numbers could have been better but there was steady progress (and then I went on vacation and indulged a bit which erased some of that progress…*sigh*)

By the scale I’m down about 7lbs since I started this and here’s how the inches stack up. Not a huge change from day 75 to day 90 but from 1-90 there was quite a bit.

bbm_progress_in_numbers

I missed my calf measurement in that table but I lost an inch there too!

Sadly, I don’t have after pictures because we were at the beach (and I didn’t think to ask anyone to take my pic…*sigh* the life of a photographer. Always behind the camera, never in front)

So, now that this is over I’m left with “now what?!” -itis. There is a 3.0 coming in the new year plus she’s re-releasing 2.0 come September. I personally have to get on the half marathon training program and will continue with a mini challenge that was posted during the lull between 1.0 and 2.0. Bottom line, I’m not stopping here. I have another 5-10lbs that I’d love to lose and this seemed to work well for me so I’m gonna keep on doing it!

Jul 182014
 

So, I’ve been following the Bikini Body Mommy program for 75 days now without any big misses (I think I outrightly skipped 2 workouts but only on days where I’d done something else active – like run or bike) and it’s showing!

As of day 75 I’m down almost 10.5 inches and 6lbs which is huge for me since up to this point I tried everything and could not make that scale budge. The progress is slower than I’d like (of course) but yesterday was a turning point for me. Mainly because people outside of my immediate family noticed and commented on the changes.

We have 15 days left and it all culminates in a beach trip for the family! Totally didn’t plan it that way but it works out well. I’ll actually be at the beach for final weigh in and measurements so I may have to do them before I leave – a day shy of the real ones.

Starting Measurements:
Chest – 36
Waist – 33
Hips/Tush – 39
Thigh – 23
Calf – 15
Bicep – 12

75 day Measurements:
Chest – 33.5 (-2.5)
Waist – 29.5 (-3.5)
Hips/Tush – 38.25 (.75) (so excited to see this move)
Thigh – 21 (-2)
Calf – 14 (-1)
Bicep – 10.75 (-1.25)

Trying out the new bikini in this last set of pics!!

PhotoGrid_1405687028996

Jun 072014
 

So, just over 30 days ago I started this Bikini Body Mommy program with a few of my old high school friends in an effort to shape up, change my lifestyle and loose a few pounds.

The program consists of 6 days a week of short high intensity workouts that alternate between cardio and strength. They’re generally under 25 min which is totally digestible when the only time you have to do them is after the kids are in bed – at 9:30pm!

They have check in’s every 15 days so I figured I’d share some results because well, evening training for a half marathon didn’t make my weight budge but this..this is working!

Starting Measurements:
Chest – 36
Waist – 33
Hips/Tush – 39
Thigh – 23
Calf – 15
Bicep – 12

30 day Measurements:
Chest – 35 (-1)
Waist – 31 (-2)
Hips/Tush – 39 (0) (which is as expected, I don’t carry my weight there…I carry it in my belly)
Thigh – 22 (-1)
Calf – 15 (0)
Bicep – 11 (-1)

I’m trying not to focus on the weight aspect of this whole thing. Muscle weighs more than fat right? Although I can’t pretend that I don’t care about the scale number – I do..alot! I’m just trying really hard not to focus on it. That said, from the time I started this to day 30 I’m down 4 lbs. 4lbs in a month isn’t bad considering it’s always hardest to lose that last 10 right?

I can’t believe I’m going to share these because they’re terrible but the do show a small difference which I’m hoping after the next 30 days will be an even bigger difference.

(ignore the messy basement and horrible look on my face…selfies after you busted our butt for 30 min are not exactly the most flattering pictures)

day1_day30

May 182014
 

(or “enemy action” depending on what Rule of Three definition you want to go by..)

As always I’ve been in a start/stop mode with the whole working out thing. I was doing really well when I was training for the half and even signed up for another half to try to keep it up. Unfortunately somewhere in the working, commute, trying to dinner made, kids fed and bathed and into bed, I fell off the wagon. Seems that falling off the wagon, which I’ve done more than three times for sure, has become my pattern.

Fortunately for me, patterns can be changed if you try hard enough. I realized that I have to stop viewing my efforts as a diet and rather look at it for the lifestyle change that is necessary to live healthier.

Before kids DH and I were out every night doing something active. Our mountain bikes never sat idle for more an a day or two and our backpacks got a regular beating at least every other weekend. It was our lifestyle.

Fast forward a bunch of years, a house, a dog, kids, and the responsibility that surrounds those, things changed (as one would expect them to). Our lifestyle changed and while we’re just as happy as we were before we’re not as healthy. Face it, trying to cook a healthy dinner every night while dealing with a long evening commute and kids that are starving when they get home doesn’t always happen. It’s really easy to resort to bag meals, frozen chicken nuggets and PB&J sammies and exercise is the last thing on my mind.

So when a friend of mine was looking for accountability partners for a 90 day challenge and I saw it as the perfect opportunity to kick off a lifestyle change and try to get back to that active state as a family.

What this meant for me (which will hopefully trickle down the family) was:

1. Planning my lunch and dinner menus for the week and shopping for it (generally on Saturday).

And writing it down on the menu board so everyone knows. Having the plan means that I can avoid the 20 min “oh-shoot” stance in front of the fridge wondering what I’m going to make. It also allows me to try to prep things ahead of time on the off occasion I have the energy left over at the end of the previous day. I’ve been doing this since Lia came along but have in the most recent weeks skipped it. So, I’m trying to get back into the habit. I don’t always follow the menu but it’s nice to have it there when it is needed. (I usually plan 4 meals, 2 backups and one assume “out” night per week). I added my lunches to this plan as well to keep from eating out every days.

2. Switching to a more whole foods diet and cutting way back on the processed foods

This is the biggest switch I think. This means ditching soda, alcohol (except for special occasions), and as much processed food as possible. And switching to lots of whole veggies and fruits and meats. I’ve been really trying to shop the outside walls of the grocery store vs. the aisles (because you find more of the prepackaged and proceed foods in the aisles generally).

We’ve also cut our eating out at restaurants way back. Which, aside from being an awesome calorie saver, is a money saver too!

3. Logging everything in MyFitnessPal

So that I can keep a sense of what I’m eating on a regular basis. One of the goals of this lifestyle change is to get back to a healthier weight. Which I know will come with improved eating and activity but while I’m still learning portion control and making better choices in the food department, I have MFP to back me up (and the community that surrounds it).


4. Picking up a work out that I can do in my limited time in the evenings.

My friend introduced me to the Bikini Body Mommy Challenge which is what spurred much of this change. I’d love to get out for a run every evening to keep active but truthfully I have about 20 min to spare and that’s generally after the kids are in bed (so it’s dark out – I don’t like running in the dark). In those cases in the past I would just make up an excuse and move on (and I still may some nights:). However, BBM takes 30 min or less but still gets the heart pumping so I’m able to fit in a quick burn and feel good about the day. That doesn’t mean that I’m not going to jump at the chance for a long run or ride, but as for daily exercise – this does it.

We’re also, as a family, trying to find activities that we can do together. DH and Noah go out for a kayak ride sometimes in the evening or a bike ride as I’m putting Lia to bed. We’ve been grilling out a lot so that we can play soccer or kickball in the back yard as dinner cooks. On the weekends we go for at least one big family walk or bike ride a day.

Bottom line, I want to make sure that as Lia and Noah grow up, they favor the outdoors like we do and want to do things that get them out and stretching their legs and lungs. So far so good – they’d rather be outside playing than inside so we just have to keep it up!!

Mar 252014
 

I seem to do this to myself every year…sign up for a race of some sort in order to motivate my butt to move it! move it! I signed up and missed the Richmond Half in Nov so when my co-worker floated Rock and Roll DC in March I was hesitant to commit. But a little peer pressure by the others that signed up was enough to push me over the line.

I promised myself that I’d train for this one which is silly because it was winter and of course this winter had to be one of the worst on record for the DC area. However, I did actually manage to put in some miles before the weekend, even if it was mostly on a treadmill.

I didn’t follow any specific training plan but did figure that I needed to get to at least 10 mile the weekend before the race (if not better) and only wanted to increase my long runs by a mile each week. So working back I put a loose schedule together. Running 2 times during the week for 2 and 3 miles initially and then 4 and 5 miles in the latter parts set me up well for my long runs on the weekends.

Two weekends prior to the race I hit my longest distance of 11 miles. Then the weather and horrible leg cramps hit which meant I pretty much took the entire week before the race off. I tried a long run the weekend prior but only made it 4 miles. Mid week I tried another 5k and only managed to squeak out 2 miles. I was terrified that I wasn’t going to make the 13 miles. So I sent my husband out for Epsom salts and bathed in them every night for the week and did a bunch of extra stretching (which I’m terrible at remembering normally). Thankfully it seemed to work.

This was the first race that I would be running without DH which is different for me. I’m used to him being there to not only carry the fuel but to keep me company and push when I’m feeling terrible. He’s a great motivator and he’s perfectly happy running my slack pace. However, it turns out one of my co-workers was in the same start corral as I was. We’d agreed to run together as much as we could but wouldn’t let the other one hold them back if they felt like they needed to go. It worked our really well. She pushed me through the first 4 miles at a much faster pace than I would have pushed myself and I carried her through the tough parts and the hills. Ultimately we separated at 10 miles because her knee was done but I attribute much of my time to her pushing at the start.

That left me by myself for 3 miles which was good because my pace announcement told me I was still sub 2 hours and a quick calculation in my head told me that I could still run this sub 2:30 which was my ultimate goal but I’d have to run fast – like negative split fast. I figure, it was 3 miles, I could hurt for 3 miles so I kicked it into gear and despite a quick stop in the finish corral to say hi to my family (who surprised me and came to watch) I made it in under 2:30. 2:19 to be exact!

Now, I’ve been sitting here thinking I beat my PR by a long shot only to find out (by looking back at my Garmin data) that I beat my last half time by a long shot (the one I didn’t train for) but did not beat my PR:( Boo, guess I have something to work towards for the next one.

3/22/2009 VA Beach Shamrock Half (pre kids – trained to 8) – 2:15
5/15/2011 Pittsburgh Half (A year after Noah’s birth – trained to 8) – 2:20
5/5/2013 Pittsburgh Half (9 months after Lia’s birth – no training) – 2:40
3/15/2014 Rock and Roll USA (first half by myself – trained to 11mi) – 2:19

The biggest difference with this one was that my recovery was much less and I felt strong through the finish vs all the others where I barely made it across the line.

The only picture I have of the day that I don’t have to pay $24 for (although I may…some are pretty hilarious because I was sure to mug for the camera when I saw them)running_girls

Jul 222013
 

So…when your mom and your son both ask if there’s a baby in that belly I think that’s a sign that it’s high time to recommit to eating well and exercising. So many things have been in the way lately; from my new job that has me all over the place to selling our house and searching for a new one and the effort that goes into that (more to come if I ever find the time to write things up). It’s time to stop making excuses and find the time to do it right.

So, today I’m at 140 and committed to planning my lunches and dinners. I’ll be using my Fitbit and MyFitness pal to track inputs and expenditures (because outputs sounded wrong) and drinking lots and lots of water. I’m also cutting sweets and trying to add more protein to balance out the carbs I love. And of course, amping up the fruits and veggies. With all of this, in 6 weeks I’ll be down 5 lbs. Cross your fingers.

I know I need to add exercise but we’re taking this one step at a time. If I can get out twice a week for a long walk I’ll be happy. I’m finding with my Fitbit that an evening full of cleaning is actually enough to get all my steps in.

So anywho…not sure why I’m telling you all this other than the small hope that it spurs me on to keep with it. I suppose if that’s not enough, the video that DH took of me last week where I looked 5 months pregnant should be enough…ugh…

Jan 282013
 

Things have stalled. I’m counting calories (or at least was for a while but fell off the wagon over the holidays) but I’ve been bouncing around in the low 140’s for the most part. I’m not happy with that but I’m dealing with it for now. I’d love to go below 140 but it seems that as soon as I do, my milk supply tanks:( And since my goal is to get Lia to 6 months with breastfeeding I can’t yet give up!! Almost there (although, with how sick she’s been I think I need to keep it up until at least March so she gets those good antibodies).

My dilemma is this tho – we have a half marathon coming up in May (early May) and I’m not even the slightest bit in shape. I figure I need to hit training hard core by early March at the latest but it would really help if I started things now (because, let’s face it, I’m a lazy trainer and a lazy runner. There’s nothing “hard core” about me when I exercise. I’m definitely a fair weather athlete haha). I just haven’t figured out how to add exercise in without causing my supply to tank. I’m counting calories and thought I was making up the deficit (I worked out for like a week back in the fall:) ). I know people have done both I just can’t figure out how I can.

So anyways…that’s where we stand. I’ll check back in on this front next month.

Oct 122012
 

Okay, a little over 1 month but close enough:) I’ve made some progress in the baby weight department:)

I’m happy to say that I’m only 2 lbs away from when I got pregnant with Lia! Now I only have another 10 to get below pre Noah weight and nearly 15 to get to my goal:)

Start: 167 lbs (i had it wrong before…i was almost 170 when I went into the hospital with her…holy hell) I came home from the hospital at 160.
Today: 142 lbs
Goal: 125 lbs

I’ll have to take a better before shot of myself but here’s one from the bathroom at work today:)

I’ve been watching my calories and breastfeeding for the most part of that loss. I’ve added back in moderate exercise sporadically haha. I went for a run and a bike ride this past weekend and experimented with a night run after Lia was in bed (DH was on Noah duty) last night and that seemed to work. So perhaps we can add that in now too 3x a week. We’ll see. I’m trying to be careful about how much I lose how quickly so I don’t affect my supply of milk for Lia. It’s already taken a hit with pumping so I want to be careful not to compromise it further.

In addition to cardio, I have developed what I like to call the “get it when you can ” workout which means that I do pushups, calf raises, planks, whatever while I’m doing other things like putting on my makeup or doing my hair. I particularly like doing wall pushups in the shower. It’s a back massage and work out in one!

Anywho..there’s progress. Hopefully it keeps going as I’m already starting to notice that my old pants fit again (most of them anyways). The belly is still pretty jiggly but that tends to be where I carry my weight so I expect it to fall off last. Thankfully it’s sweater season so I can hide it for the most part (the muffin top that is). Here’s to hoping it’s gone by next summer!!

Sep 062012
 

As I approach the 6 week mark after having Lia I’m starting to look more seriously into how to lose this weight (and the extra 10 left over from Noah that I never lost). All told I have 35 to lose to be at an ideal weight and I’ve already lost 10ish of that. I know diet and exercise is the way to go but I have a few hurdles to hop over first.

First, when the heck am I going to fit in 30/60 min of exercise once I go back to work? Right now every min is accounted for and it’s only going to get worse once I start back to work. I don’t have a solution for this yet. I can always get up earlier but then it’s dark outside and I’m hesitant to go running in the dark. Perhaps some Jillian Michaels or some P90x (or Insanity?) in the early morning time before everyone wakes up. If Lia keeps her schedule (which I’m thinking she will for at least another few months) then I’m up at 5 anyways. By the time I feed her and get her back down I still have about an hour before anyone wakes up. That shoudl be plenty of time to get something in right?? Working moms, what do you do?

Second, I’m still breastfeeding and plan on doing so for as long as I can. That means that I can’t cut my calories very drastically or else I’ll affect my milk supply. To solve this I’ve signed up with MyFitnessPal and downloaded the app to my phone. That way I can track the calories I put into my body and make sure I’ve got enough in there to fuel the milk pumps:) Anyone want to be my friend on MFP – Linzyxo, look me up!

Lastly, pure motivation. I get bored easily. Working out has to be fun or else I’m quick to dismiss it. A new gadget is fun for a while and will keep my attention (like my Garmin. I’m thinking I need a Fitbit now) but the shine wears off soon and I’m bored again. One thing that has worked in the past is setting a big goal. We’ve trained for 2 half marathons and during both I managed to lose some weight and get with the cardio program so I’m going to do that again. Once registration opens I’m going to sign myself (and DH) up for the Pittsburgh 1/2 marathon. We loved it a few years ago when we did it and would love to do it again. Problem is, I’m at square 1 this time. I haven’t run in almost a year. Heck, I haven’t walked more than a mile in almost 10 months. I went out with the dog for a long fast walk and realized just how far I have to go to get back into running shape. So, taking this slowly. I have 9 months to the race!

Anyways, 9 months on 9 months off right? This weight isn’t going to disappear overnight and I realize that. I would however like enough of it to go away so I don’t have to buy a new wardrobe for work. That leaves me 5ish weeks to drop 5 lbs. I think I can do it.

So, here’s a start…

Starting weight – 160lbs (the day Lia was born)
Today – 150lbs (BMI 26.8 – Edge of overweight)
Goal – 125lbs (BMI 22 – Middle of normal)

Oh and I’m dragging DH along for the ride. He’s complaining that his pants are too tight yada yada…so, I’ve reserved the right to nag him about what he eats and how often he exercises and he has the same right to nag me. Such love…such love….

Jul 182011
 

My weight has gotten a little out of hand lately and this time I don’t have the excuse of just having a baby…. I’ve been watching it slowly creep up over the last 2-3 months and I’m not happy. I was sooo close to getting back to a reasonable weight for me but now find myself back at square one – the same weight I was 6 weeks post Noah (137lbs for those that want to know). And while I don’t look all that heavy (it distributes pretty well around my mid section), I feel it. I’m exhausted in the evenings and my clothes are tighter. On bloaty day I could pass for 5 months pregnant – sooo not good (and it only makes me feel worse since I’d love to be 5 mo pg at this point)

So…I’m going to buy myself either a monthly pass at the local rec center or a 25 admissions pass and try to go in the evenings. They have child care on MWF until 7:30pm so I can take Noah with me if necessary. Plus, I’ve started counting calories again using my handy dandy calorie counter app on my phone (it has a barcode scanner – that novelty alone should keep me interested for oh say…20 min?). In addition I’m going to trying to pack my lunch every day and refill my coffee mug with water at least 4 times during the day and see what happens.

Anywho…I’m telling you all in hopes of staying on the bandwagon this time. They say it takes something like 28 days to create a new habit…maybe I can keep this up that long and start a new habit. (and maybe I’ll post a before pic to compare against).

May 152011
 

I’m sitting here with ice on both knees feeling like I’m a hundred years old but we did it! We completed our second half marathon today (hubbys and I)! The goal for this one was just to finish. Our training was minimal this time around so just finishing without hurting ourselves was sufficient. Surprisingly, we did better than that and managed to run all but about 5 min of it (I hit a wall around 7 miles and needed a moment to switch muscle groups and walk). Our pace was just a few seconds slower than the one we trained for two years ago and overall we were just about 5 min slower which to me is amazing all considering.

I’d love to have pics to share with you but I wasn’t willing to add anymore weight or distractions so we got the finish line pic taken and we’ll have to buy it later. I do have a pretty metal and two beautiful blisters to show for it though (wanna see the blisters?? haha? now, aren’t you glad I didn’t take pics:) ).

Noah stayed back with gramma and papa and went to church (where I’m told he attached himself to my moms side and would not let her put him down….heavy as he is, you know she was loving it – ha mamma?:) ). Our drive home was another epic drive but pleasant enough.

I’m off to edit some family pics from the weekend if I can keep my eyes open. Hopefully I’ll update later this week with those. I need it to stop raining so that I can take my new awesome antique chair out to a field and take some Noah pics! Maybe this upcoming weekend. Any whoo…

Mar 282011
 

DH let me sleep in this AM! I woke up at 7:45 and everything was silent. I figured they were sleeping again so I took my time getting ready and then decided it was time to get Noah ready for school. I opened the door of the nursery to find DH on the floor under a blanket and a tiny little lump next to him. Upon further inspection, this is what I found:

Feb 152011
 

I seem to be doing alot of that lately…catching up. Lots to do, not enough energy or daylight hours to do it in it seems….regardless, we push ahead and do our best:) However, with that thought in mind, todays “catch up” post will be in bullet form:)

– I realize that I really don’t like running…I make myself do it because I know i need the exercise but really I’m sooo bored the whole run. I even try to liven it up by setting up a good playlist and taking the dog but no…still bored. I’m thinking it’s my surroundings…I’d much rather be mountain biking or hiking in California. I think I’m spoiled….

– Had a wonderful weekend in Pittsburgh with the fam! I got to see some old friends and celebrate the impending birth of my friend Mellys baby bean. We had the fam down for some lunch and cake to celebrate Noah’s upcoming birthday (since they can’t make it down here for his actual party). I even got to sing in the choir at church – it was like old times:)

– I had my heart broken on Monday. I found out that a friend of mine from highschool suffered a devastating loss and my heart breaks for her and her husband. I don’t know what to do or say because I know that nothing I try will take away what they’re feeling right now.

– I finally accepted the fact that I’m getting old on Monday too….V-day was rather uneventful…take out dinner, bath/bed for Noah and then DH and I sat down on the couch to watch My Big Fat Greek Wedding….only to fall asleep half way thru (at 10:00pm…hahahahah)

– DH is a planner, I’ve said that in the past. We finally have our “plan” together for baby #2! There are a few things we need to do to the house in preparation for another baby but we’re well on our way to being ready to start TTC soon:)

– Lastly, the training plan has already fallen off the rails. Last week was sooooooooo cold! Running in 12 and 13 degrees just hurts so I didn’t (and my weight showed for it!). Coupled with the fact that I just don’t like running (mentioned above), I’m having a hard time keeping motivated. Plus! The numbers on the scale aren’t budging…good eating and working out and yet they stay exactly where they’ve been for the last 3 months….10lbs higher than I want them. Gah…just keep plugging I suppose…

And because I can’t leave you without a picture of Noah, he’s a sneak peek of his cake smash photo session last week…

Feb 072011
 

So I’m a day late on this but I have a good excuse – the Superbowl was yesterday and my beloved Steelers were playing (too bad they didn’t actually show up until the second half…argh…I dont want to talk about it..)

Anywho…I’m genuinely surprised. Not having been very active since about my 7th month with Noah I was anticipating a really rough first week of running. But, I made all three runs with not a ton of pain (and a pretty good pace for me) plus, they’re already starting to get easier. Dodging the snow and ice makes it slow going at times and the dog is still getting into her groove (as in, running and not stopping every 10 feet to sniff) but all in all it was a good first week.

The plan called for a 30 min run on Tuesday, a 25 min run on Thursday and a 3 mile run on Sunday. Tuesdays run was just under 2.5 miles (mainly because I biffed it early in the run and had to slow down to let my poor sore bum recover). Thursdays run was 2.6 miles in 25 min and my three mile run took a little over 32 min. I’m slightly sore today from yesterdays run and was pretty darn sore earlier in the week from the previous runs but that too is getting better.

I need to do some cross training today – weights or something but the plan says not to do anything that uses my calves? I’m sure there’s a reason there but right now it’s not clear to me. However, I will oblige since I need to do some arm work anyways (although, lifting a 24lb one year old is a good workout most days)

The weight is not dropping off like I’d hoped but it’s still early. I’m continuing my calorie counting and this three day a week running plan should have it gone in no time right??:) I really really really want to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight before we start trying for number 2. That way I’m not working of a compounded problem after that pregnancy (plus I’ll be more cognizant of my eating with number two…gallons of apple juice and Panera’s broccoli and cheese soup will not be my main stay!)

So, week 1 down…only 14 more to go until the race.

ETA: I totally spaced…I actually was kickboxing thru the summer (at least until I got laid off…) that’s why this isn’t sooooo bad…wow…mommy brain at it’s finest:)

Jan 302011
 

or we will try to go…

Months ago I signed DH and I up for the Pittsburgh half marathon which is in the middle of May. I figured it would be a good way to kick my arse in to gear at the height of winter at a time when usually when I’m at my heaviest (which is soooo much different than prior to Noah). Well, a girlfriend posted a note on Fbook about her first race of the season in March and it reminded me that it’s probably time to kick that plan into gear (actually, she said I still have time – she forgets, I’m going couch to 21k on a body that holds almost 10lbs more than my previous race…so…start slow:)).

So, I set out to find a plan that I think will work for me. I was looking for something that didn’t run more than 3x a week because based on our training for the last half, my knees were shot if I ran any more than that (plus, my first foray into running post Noah didn’t go well..). Moreover, I needed something I could accomplish during the day while Noah was at daycare (on my “lunch hour”) because bundling him up to take him out in this weather is one of the reasons I’m not doing more. Thanks to the wonder that is Google I found a plan on jeffgalloway.com that I’m going to try.

Annnnnnd….to keep myself accountable I’m going to report in weekly (on Sunday’s hopefully) – aren’t you all excited?!

And just because I can’t go without giving you a Noah picture….:)

Jan 092011
 

So there’s a reason the Friday shape up has been MIA – I’ve fallen off the wagon big time. I’ve tried a few times to hop back on but the darn thing just must be uneven or something ’cause I see to always fall off the other side. Miraculously I’ve not gained all that much back, I’ve simply plateaued but I’m not moving the direction I want. So…last week I finally got the bike up on the indoor trainer and got the computer all hooked up (speedometer and cadence counter) and decided to give it a try.

O. M. G

I’m sooo out of shape! 15 min on that thing had me reaching for my inhaler. I guess months without much aerobic activity does that to ya! I’m not deterred though, I’m out of town for work this coming week (although, i’m hoping I can get alot of walking in to and from the office), so starting next week I’ll be on that bike at least 3x a week for at least 15 min. In addition I use the 2 min in the AM and PM while I’m brushing my teeth to do squats, leg raises, and other small but will hopefully impact the main effort.

So..here’s to starting again….130.4 lbs

Nov 192010
 

This is going to be a drive by update since DH is sitting here waiting for me to pay attention to the movie:) Weigh in this AM was better but I’m still hovering above 130 still…I really need to get my butt out for walks with the pup while the weather is still nice:

Next, Stats by the month:
Week 1 – 142lbs (7 weeks postpartum)
Week 4 – 140lbs – ouch…no excuses, I have a new workout regime and a new resolve for eating healthy…we should start seeing that number drop.
Week 8 – 135 – Hallelujah! Real progress now! I don’t expect it will continue at this rate but we’ll see.
Week 12 – 133 – time to get back to counting calories:)
Week 16 – 136.5 – taken on Monday. NOTE: this is on a new scale which disagrees with my old scale so we’re kind of resetting a bit.
Week 20 – 134.5
Week 24 – 133.6
Week 28 – 130.1
Week 32 – 133.4
Week 33 – 131.4 – time to change it up, hovering just above 130 is frustrating

Okay, I promise more fun stuff tomorrow! I have some great videos of Noey standing and starting to cruise. We have two more teeth on their way as well!

Nov 122010
 

It’s been a long week away from home and I’m super glad to be back with my boyz! DH and Noah survived the week without me here but DH is definitely very tired (and has caught the cold that Noah had before I left). The ironic part is that Noah was an angel. He was the easy one! It was the dog that kept him up (if it’s not one thing it’s the other right??!) She decided that while mommy was away, she’d ingest something to make her sick and with her sensitive digestive system the only way to right it was with meds. So, off to the vet DH tromped yesterday to get her stuff to stop the vomiting and other fun bodily functions. She’s on the mend and DH got to sleep i today which made him happy. I’m happy to be back with my Noey (who greeted me at 5am by standing in his crib yelling mamammamamama and grinning ear to ear – I love it!)

I did weigh in this AM and as expected it was not pretty. Being on travel makes it really hard to eat right. Just about anything you get from a restaurant is loaded with calories. I tried to choose the lowest calorie intake on the menu but even that was 7 or 800 calories for a meal. Argh…oh well, back on track!

This week – 133.4lbs (up 3 from last week).

Next, Stats by the month:
Week 1 – 142lbs (7 weeks postpartum)
Week 4 – 140lbs – ouch…no excuses, I have a new workout regime and a new resolve for eating healthy…we should start seeing that number drop.
Week 8 – 135 – Hallelujah! Real progress now! I don’t expect it will continue at this rate but we’ll see.
Week 12 – 133 – time to get back to counting calories:)
Week 16 – 136.5 – taken on Monday. NOTE: this is on a new scale which disagrees with my old scale so we’re kind of resetting a bit.
Week 20 – 134.5
Week 24 – 133.6
Week 28 – 130.1
Week 32 – 133.4 Long week of traveling and eating like crap has struck! Time to get back on the wagon!

Since I haven’t had time to take many pics of our little man, I’ll share some video. The first one is a shot of him crawling! He went from army crawl/lunge to full on hand and knees crawling in just a few days. Now he’s unstoppable!

This second one was a few weeks ago. We got a bunch of apples from an orchard and they were so cute and little. Perfect for his hands. Since his teeth were just starting to break thru at the time he really couldn’t do anything but gum and play with it.

Anyways, we have a pretty tame weekend ahead of us thankfully. Hopefully we’ll get out and enjoy the beautiful fall weather while we can!

Nov 072010
 

Or when you’re super busy….:) Such is the case in our house! This week was a bit crazy and as such I missed my Friday Shape Up post. Well, not much to report there so I guess that’s okay. We’re status quo…no change…neither good nor bad considering all the halloween candy in the house (which is now gone because I’ve eaten it all!). The biggest excitement this week was our refi.

We finally got the approval, all the conditions cleared, and the closer scheduled. However, at the nth hour I found a problem in our HUD-1 (actually a few problems – most of which were corrected pretty easily, some where not and lead to some scrambling in the end). To top it off, I was running around on Friday trying to wire the funds, correct/amend the wire due to a mistake by BoF’s website and make sure everything happened that day because my LO said that they had to be in by Friday at 3pm only to come and find that Monday at 3pm would have been sufficient! Argh…anyways, it’s over! The money is there, it should fund Monday afternoon and our refund should be here a week or so after that. Phew… Anyways, why this long drawn out explanation? Anyone that is choosing to refi make sure you’re comfortable with your LO – a low rate is wonderful (and easy to come by these days) but if you have no one guiding you thru the process it can be a nightmare. Fortunately I had some exposure when I worked at Chase during the last mortgage boom but still it was stressful.

On the Noah front, we’re fighting a cold or something. I can’t decide if it’s teething, a cold, or both. Poor guy has a cough, is all snuffly and just cries like he’s in pain. He’s usually fine if we’re holding him and will sometimes play on his own. But as soon as he starts to get tired things go downhill fast. I’ve been wearing him around today and that seems to help but I can’t do that this coming week when I’m in Cali. We’ve been alternating Tylenol and Ibuprofen and you start to see him get upset as it’s nearing the next dose so I’m leaning more towards teething but who knows.

On other fronts he’s a crawling machine! I’m trying to get some video up for you guys – maybe later today when he naps again! For now, I need to jet – he’s awake and screaming!:)

Oct 292010
 

Alright, now I know why I don’t keep junk food in my house – I HAVE NO WILL POWER (when it comes to snacks and chocolate)! Thanks to that lovely bowl of Halloween candy downstairs, I’m up a little bit. In the scheme of things it’s not horrible but still…I purposefully fill my cabinets with low fat, low calorie snacks and food because I know I can’t resist the sweets. Single handedly polishing off a bag of peanut butter cups over the week is not exactly on the low fat diet plan.

Next, Stats by the month:
Week 1 – 142lbs (7 weeks postpartum)
Week 4 – 140lbs – ouch…no excuses, I have a new workout regime and a new resolve for eating healthy…we should start seeing that number drop.
Week 8 – 135 – Hallelujah! Real progress now! I don’t expect it will continue at this rate but we’ll see.
Week 12 – 133 – time to get back to counting calories:)
Week 16 – 136.5 – taken on Monday. NOTE: this is on a new scale which disagrees with my old scale so we’re kind of resetting a bit.
Week 20 – 134.5
Week 24 – 133.6
Week 28 – 130.1
Week 30 – 130.7 (remember last week I was at 129 even!)

In other news:

– The job is going great! The product is sooo cool and I’m really excited to dive in. I do have to head to Cali in two weeks for a few days leaving DH alone with Noah again but we’ve called in reinforcements – his dad! I think we’ll put him on puppy duty since he and Macie get along so well. That will take some of the pressure off hubs (having a dog that demands exercise twice a day is tricky when it’s just you and Noah. In the AM’s I generally stay back and get started on the morning routine with Noah while DH takes the dog for a spin. If she misses that exercise she’s a nut case all day.)
– A rodent (we think it’s a chipmunk) has decided to take up residence in the wall by or in our bedroom (we haven’t pinpointed it yet). At 3am it decided that it was nest building time and you could hear the scratching and chewing. I just pray it’s not chewing the wires in there (ack!). I’m hoping that we don’t have a repeat performance tonight but if we do, tomorrow is going to be a fun day trying to track it down and get it out of there (how it got i there in the first place is a mystery). I’m a bit skeeved out.
– They’re doing Halloween day at daycare today. Kinda bummed I can’t be there to see Noah in his costume for the first time with all of his little friends but they promised pics! Plus we’ll put him back in it later so I can take lots of pics of him! Our little monkey is going to be a monkey:) (next year I’ll get more clever and do a coordinating costume with the dog).
– We’re carving our pumpkin tomorrow with Noah – avalanche of pics to insure I promise!
– Steelers are actually televised in DC this weekend! Wooohoooooooooooo! DC friends – Chili at my house, be there for kickoff!

Okay, that’s it. Must get to work now – break time is over!

Oct 252010
 

Ahhh…time has gotten away from me! I meant to do this over the weekend but we didn’t get back from the grandparents until late so….anyways, I did weigh myself on Friday and we’re down another pound this week somehow. I could have sworn that number was going the other way.

Next, Stats by the month:
Week 1 – 142lbs (7 weeks postpartum)
Week 4 – 140lbs – ouch…no excuses, I have a new workout regime and a new resolve for eating healthy…we should start seeing that number drop.
Week 8 – 135 – Hallelujah! Real progress now! I don’t expect it will continue at this rate but we’ll see.
Week 12 – 133 – time to get back to counting calories:)
Week 16 – 136.5 – taken on Monday. NOTE: this is on a new scale which disagrees with my old scale so we’re kind of resetting a bit.
Week 20 – 134.5
Week 24 – 133.6
Week 28 – 130.1
Week 29 – 129.0

Even though I’m only about 4lbs from my “normal” pre-pregnancy weight, my clothes still fit oddly. I’m starting to get back there but no amt of sit ups is taking care of the little mommy pouch in the front and my skin is rather loose (so, i look good with clothes on but it’s another story when I don a bikini). I’m hoping that it will firm up over time (or else I’m heading for one of those mommy makeovers after we have #2).

Anywho, now that I’m back to a normal schedule (ya for a new job) I’m more conscious of what I eat and how much exercise I get. Hopefully I can knock off those last 4 or 5 lbs before the holiday binge starts:)

Oct 152010
 

I should have known I was on to something when I finally got my e-ring on this week!!:) Another pound down! This past week I ate more junk than I normally do but still managed to keep my calories in check and evened whatever else out with a couple of walks with Noah and Daddy.

Next, Stats by the month:
Week 1 – 142lbs (7 weeks postpartum)
Week 4 – 140lbs – ouch…no excuses, I have a new workout regime and a new resolve for eating healthy…we should start seeing that number drop.
Week 8 – 135 – Hallelujah! Real progress now! I don’t expect it will continue at this rate but we’ll see.
Week 12 – 133 – time to get back to counting calories:)
Week 16 – 136.5 – taken on Monday. NOTE: this is on a new scale which disagrees with my old scale so we’re kind of resetting a bit.
Week 20 – 134.5
Week 24 – 133.6
Week 28 – 130.1

I can’t believe it’s Friday again! These weeks are just flying by! The job front is looking up. I’m going to keep mum now for fear of jinxing things! Hopefully this time next week I’ll have some news!

Oct 142010
 

So there are days when I’m just not motivated to eat right or exercise (heck, lately that’s been most days but that’s another topic for another day). Those days I need an extra bit of inspiration to get my tush moving.

Enter the older neighborhood lady that I saw running in the rain this AM!

Not just running to get out of the rain but really running, like she was on mile 6 of her 10 mile loop. I love this lady! When DH and I would walk the dog in the AM (B.N. aka before Noah) we’d see her almost every day – rain, snow, or shine she was out jogging on the path by our house. Some days it looked like more effort than others but never fail you would see her plodding away with a smile on her face! And what do I mean by “older”? Well, my best guess is that she’s in her late 70’s.

How’s that for inspiration to get your tush off the couch and do a little exercise?

Oct 082010
 

Okay, no change this week. I’ve been bad about my eating but have been out walking with DH and Noah so I guess it evened out. Not much to say other than that:)

Next, Stats by the month:
Week 1 – 142lbs (7 weeks postpartum)
Week 4 – 140lbs – ouch…no excuses, I have a new workout regime and a new resolve for eating healthy…we should start seeing that number drop.
Week 8 – 135 – Hallelujah! Real progress now! I don’t expect it will continue at this rate but we’ll see.
Week 12 – 133 – time to get back to counting calories:)
Week 16 – 136.5 – taken on Monday. NOTE: this is on a new scale which disagrees with my old scale so we’re kind of resetting a bit.
Week 20 – 134.5
Week 24 – 133.6
Week 27 – 131.4

We’re kind of back to the drawing board with the jobs thing. The one that looked uber promising (that had given me a verbal – “you’re it”) fell thru. They decided to take it a different direction and evaluate some internal folks that had what I was missing – healthcare industry background and figured they’d teach them the other skills they need to do the job. The guy said he has two other positions he’s interested in me for so now I get to go interview some more with them:) At least it’s an interview. I have a few others lined up for next week too so we’ll see what works out. I’ve tackled one of the biggest hurdles by just getting in the door at these places, now to just stay on top of them and keep pushing them along:)

I really want to be back in a job before the holiday season hits. Hiring tends to slow during that time and not pick up again until after the new year so…keeps your fingers crossed and I’ll keep mine (and my legs, arms, hairs, and anythign else I can cross:) ).

Oct 012010
 

So things are finally progressing. Not sure what I did but we’re down a little bit more this week. I still have a ways to go (as evidenced by my shopping spree the other day because I had no work clothes:) ) but progress is progress.

Next, Stats by the month:
Week 1 – 142lbs (7 weeks postpartum)
Week 4 – 140lbs – ouch…no excuses, I have a new workout regime and a new resolve for eating healthy…we should start seeing that number drop.
Week 8 – 135 – Hallelujah! Real progress now! I don’t expect it will continue at this rate but we’ll see.
Week 12 – 133 – time to get back to counting calories:)
Week 16 – 136.5 – taken on Monday. NOTE: this is on a new scale which disagrees with my old scale so we’re kind of resetting a bit.
Week 20 – 134.5
Week 24 – 133.6
Week 26 – 131.4

On other fronts, I’m still waiting to hear on the job. Hopefully I’ll hear from the company on Tuesday with positive info. They told me everything is great and everyone loved me so I guess we’ll see. I’m continuing to “work my pipeline” just in case this one falls through.

And I finally managed to get a hold of a human at the UI office! I found out that I’d filed wrong to begin with which delayed things. All’s well now apparently so I should see my checks soon but it would have been nice to actually hear from someone when my original file was wrong. I can’t imagine being a single income home where you rely on those checks for food, rent/mortgage, and daily living. We’re lucky enough to have another income and some savings that could hold us up if necessary. These checks just make sure we’re not dipping into savings (and don’t even get me started on COBRA!)

Oh, and for hanging with me…here’s a cute Noah pic:)

Sep 272010
 

Okay, now that it looks like I’ll be going back to an office setting (don’t want to jinx it but I’ve got a good feeling about this week), I need to actually put forth some effort when it comes to getting dressed in the AM. DC is rather formal (so much more so than Cali) and being that I’ve worked at home for the last 4 years, gained 10 lbs, and what not, my wardrobe is just not up to snuff. Coupled with the fact that I’m waaay fashion challenged (seriously, get me on “What not to wear” please…I can take it!), I need help!

At this point in time I have one pair of pants that fit well and maybe two shirts. I’m going to see this one company for the 3rd and 4th times and am really struggling on finding something new to wear. I have a pair of basic pants (grey/black pinstrip), a plain black silk blouse, and cami paired with a pretty sweater that I can build on but not enough to make up even a weeks worth of outfits. Soo…I have two challenges for you guys.

1. From time to time (and probably more frequently in the next few weeks as I build a new wardrobe) I’ll post a specific piece of clothing that I’m struggling with and you can help me figure out what to pair and accessorize it with.
2. Who wants to put together a not super expensive, versatile, cute and stylish outfit (or two) using internet links??:) Think of me as your real live Barbie doll! Just keep in mind I’m short (5’2″ on a good day – 5’5″ in heels).

I don’t want to go too crazy now because I’m still losing weight and have some really cute things in the closet that sans these 10lbs would actually fit. But I do need something for in between. I’m not opposed to dresses or shopping at Target (or Marshalls or Ross:) ). I tend to gravitate to H&M, Gap, Banana Republic, and Express. Just to give you an idea.

So any ways, here’s the first piece of clothing that I’m struggling with. Right now I have it paired with a short sleeved black sweater that I just don’t love but it’ll do for now.

I need to take a pic of the actual skirt but since it’s 11:30pm and I’m dressed for bed, here’s the shape (trumpet or flared take your pick)…

But in kind of a tweedy pattern (black and white, wool). I love it but just can’t figure out what to put on top without it cutting me off totally! I want to look professional but not stuffy. Something cute and stylish. Help!??

I’ll be back in a few days asking for more advice…anything you can do to help in the mean time is appreciated:) Think of me as your real live Barbie and DC friends, anyone who wants to take me shopping I’m totally game for! I’ll try on anything!

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