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Category Archives: Health & Fitness

Our Weight Loss Contract


Last month, Dennis and I took a contract out on ourselves.

Dennis, with plenty of help from me, had reached his highest weight ever, and I’d packed on 17 pounds since quitting Weight Watchers in May (a whopping 27 pounds since this time last year!).  I know that’s impressive, but I’d prefer to impress with weight loss rather than gain, thankyouverymuch!

For months we had been talking about an idea we’d been brewing, an incentive plan to help us lose the weight together that didn’t include paying someone else for their help.  So when we finally got completely disgusted with ourselves to the point that even fries and cheesecake couldn’t soothe our nutrition-deprived souls, we put everything down in writing and signed it.

With this contract, we are paying ourselves to lose weight!   The money that we would have spent on Weight Watchers (it’s about $50 a month per person), is going into an online savings account each month, automatically deposited just like the WW payment would have been automatically withdrawn.  We will continue these monthly deposits until we both reach our goal weights, and at that point, we are going to use it to buy a new television!  (The one we have is the first thing we ever bought together, thirteen years ago, and the screen has been displaying a discolored the picture for the last eight.  So a new one would be nice!)  If one of us makes their goal first, then the $50 will go to them each month instead of the savings account, and they can use it to splurge on whatever they wish as long as they maintain their weight.

We each agreed to count our calories, exercise five times a week, and get 7 1/2-8 hours of sleep each night.

So far, we’ve each lost about 10 pounds.  Mine was all lost the first two weeks and then I got lazy with counting calories but I’m back on it this week so hopefully I’ll show a loss again.  Dennis has been keeping his end of the bargain with exercise, but I just now for the first time did a strength routine last night (I feel gloriously sore today) and other than that, have only been walking the dog the few nights a week that I’m home early enough to do so.

I’m also a bit sketchy on the 8 hours of sleep, and so is Dennis.  This has been a struggle for us, especially once my schedule shifted to later in the day which caused him to stay up so we could have time together when I get home, and me to stay up even later trying to get things done like I used to after work when I got off at a decent hour.  But a bedtime of 6 AM is just not OK with me!  I hate waking up in the afternoon and feeling like I’ve already wasted the day, and I usually get up after 6 hours of sleep simply because I can’t stand to sleep in daylight.  So I’ve got to work on going to bed after work and doing things in the morning, after sleeping, instead of in the morning because I just stayed up that late.

So we’ve got things in motion!  I’d totally recommend our plan for couples, because you automatically have someone for support, which I find essential during the journey, but I think it would also be a good plan to do on your own as long as you can find some motivation and encouragement outside of yourself.  There is a good health & fitness blogging community out there and if you’re looking for some help, here are a few suggestions:

Skinny Emmy
This is my favorite weight loss blog because Emmy has a really long journey ahead of her and behind her: she started at 455 pounds, is now at 342, and has another 142 to go!  She is such an inspiration, and her posts are always interesting.

Former Fat Guy
Rob also had a long weight loss journey, once weighing 475 pounds, but finished it and now maintains a muscular and healthy physique.  Check his blog for interesting posts on health, nutrition, recipes, muscle building, and weight loss.

Waisting Time
Karen is a reforming yo-yo dieter that blogs her triumphs and failures along the way.  I love her writing style!  Plus, she’s from Kansas too so maybe I’m a little biased for that reason as well. :)

3 Fat Chicks on a Diet!
This site has tons of helpful articles on diets, fitness, food, lifestyle & being plus sized.  A great resource for anybody trying to lose weight.

If you read a weight loss or healthy lifestyle blog, I’d love for you to leave a link to your favorite one in the comments!

And can I just say, I’m so proud of myself for putting a goal weight of 140 pounds?  For some reason I have this idea that 130 is the magic number, despite not having seen it in my entire adult life except when I got type 1 diabetes without knowing it and dropped fifty pounds in three months.  I feel pretty good when I’m 150 and really great when I’m 140 and I know that to get down to 130 would require the kind of life-long deprivation and exercise I could never commit to.  I’ve been to 140 and I think it is do-able for long term if I take it slow and get used to eating less on a gradient.  So, yay me for being realistic this time!  :)

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Weight Watchers Walk-It 5K

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Saturday morning, my husband and I dragged ourselves out of bed sporting eye bags heavy enough to weigh down our faces so that we could participate in the Weight Watchers Walk-It 5K at Sedgwick County park.  I was so tired that I probably would have gone back to bed if I hadn’t bought a shirt, but I didn’t pay $17 for a special hot pink Walk-It shirt just to sleep through the 5K.  Funny, the things that can motivate you.

I fueled the upcoming walk with my favorite fruit.  Mango!


We arrived a few minutes late, and I was told my leader, Marsha, wasn’t that far ahead so I made up my mind that we were going to catch up to walk the 5K  with her.  I really wanted to introduce her to my husband because they both have a great sense of humor and I knew they’d get along famously.  Dennis tried to talk me into running, but the woman is in her seventies and I thought if we walked really fast we’d catch up easily.  Boy, was I wrong!

Notice the lack of people?  They’re out of sight in the far distance with Marsha in the lead.  I liked the way the sun was streaming through pockets in the clouds.  The clouds were moving quickly and that heavenly searchlight forged along in a steady stream–quite a sight to behold!

Marsha became my figurative carrot on the end of a stick and we walked like a house afire to try and catch up to her.   (I’m not sure how a house afire walks, but apparently it’s very fast because Grandma Millner always used that expression when observing someone walking quickly.)  Have you ever walked so fast that it felt like it would be easier to just take off running?  Usually when I get to that point, I go ahead and start running, but everyone else was walking except the few radicals that weren’t in our Weight Watchers group, and I didn’t want to attract any more attention than  Dennis’ amazing bedhead (I don’t know how he does it, but he wakes up with the same exact hair sticking up every morning!) and my racoon eyes were drawing already.

I know what you’re thinking, but the wind wasn’t blowing.

I know what you’re thinking, but I’m not related to a basset hound.  Doesn’t the background look just like you imagine the Kansas prairie looked before the first settlers?

We passed people.  And passed more people.  Some I recognized from my meetings and I asked each group if they’d seen Marsha and every one of them laughed and wished me luck catching up.  Apparently Marsha has a reputation for being a very fast walker, so we kept our speed up and our eyes on the horizon, hoping for a glimpse of her, but I never even caught sight of my carrot.  But having that carrot definitely made me work harder to finish the 5K than I normally would have.

I have a unique ability to appear as if I’m moving at the speed of molasses in photos, even when I’m running!  Despite the posed look of this photo, I promise I was bookin’.  I had Dennis run way ahead to take a pic so that I wouldn’t have to slow down.  I had a carrot to catch!

GASP! I see babies!

How dare these runners buck the system and pass us during a WALKING challenge?! The nerve.

By the time we finished, I was sore!  Dennis grabbed the camera while I was stretching, so I raised my arm for a victory pose.  (I think I may have invented a new yoga stance!  Or is this one taken already?)  I guess my eye bags were too heavy for me to keep my lids open at this point.

Dennis wanted to show off his flexibility as well. You never know what sort of pictures you’ll have after he gets a hold of the  camera!

You never cease to amaze me, honey.  ;)

Dennis had to see how he fared on the Möbius strip in the park before we left.

LOL, I adore that goof!  Crazy bedhead and all.

Dennis awarded his hard work and support of me (thank you, honey! You rock.) with his favorite fruit, a raspberry bismarck. :)

And I went for a yummy fat-free vanilla cappucino, probably my favorite coffee drink as long as it’s not from Starbucks. Sue me, but I prefer Dillons or Quik Trip.

Although anti-climactic, since I never caught up to Marsha, I thoroughly enjoyed power walking a 5K and the sore feeling that still resides in my hips and thighs reminds me of the only part of working out I enjoy–that lovely sore and spent feeling afterward.  I really need to get my cardio back on–it’s been hibernating for several months now and I can tell my fitness level has suffered!  I know that saying “some day” means you’ll never do it, but….some day. :)

Pressing related questions (pick one, answer all, or ignore–up to you!): Have you ever heard or used the expression “like a house afire?”  What motivates you to push yourself during a workout?  What’s your favorite fruit?  Any fellow Starbucks haters out there?

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