Archive for July, 2011

A voice over announces this is the season finale of Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition.  Very short season but that seems to be trend in television these days, short 1st seasons.  My DVR tells me there are no episodes scheduled for the next 2 weeks.  Does this mean no reunion show?  I am going to tweet Chris Powell and ask him.  Hopefully he will answer me.

Tonight we meet Krista, a  34 yr old married mother of a very sick child.  Her daughter has a seizure disorder and needs brain surgery.  Her daughter’s hospital stays are heart wrenching and Krista has neglected herself while caring for her child.  At the 1st weigh- in we discover Krista weighs 445 lbs.  She has to be weighed on a freight scale and is demoralized by that aspect of the process.  Week one boot camp shows Krista can’t do the most basic exercises and things get emotional right from the  jump.  Chris goes home with Krista to spend 3 days months training her personally.  She is given the now customary home gym with the latest in fitness equipment.  Chris announces her 3 month goal is to loss 100 lbs and her reward will be a much needed 2nd family car.  Talk about motivation!  We then see the typical collage of Chris training Krista, 5:00 am wake up calls with acoustic guitar serenades (maybe not the treat it appears to be).  During the 3 day month stay Chris takes Krista to a bridal boutique.  When she first married her husband, it was a quickie affair with a black dress because she couldn’t fit into a typical dress.  Chris offers Krista a do over with the dress of her dreams.  But we hit a snag in that the largest dress comes in a size 18 and Krista is a 32.  So we figure her final goal weight is whatever will get her into that size 18.  I found myself getting a little emotional  at this point.   Even at my heaviest, I’ve always been able to walk into a store and grab something off the rack.  I didn’t like the numbers at times, but not being able to find clothes to fit me was never an issue.  I felt her pain at holding a beautiful gown and only being able to look at it on the hanger.  At the 90 day weigh-in Chris mentions the car being gifted is courtesy of reshapethenation. (com?), his online weight loss website.  He doesn’t even give the whole name of the site.  All season long has been riddled with missed opportunities.  No recipes, exercise techniques, or fitness tips of any kind.  So along with a book that’s not out yet, we find out about a website he only partially mentions.  Is this show just a filler with no intentions of returning?  Anyway, Krista losses the 100 lbs plus 5lbs for extra measure :-).

Now comes the part where we say goodbye to Chris and his backpack.  Krista’s next 3 month goal is to lose 60 lbs.  I see the trend here with all the show participants.  They’ve all been given similar weight loss goals at each phase.  I suspect there is a meal plan that is calculated to achieve the weight loss Chris predicts each time…  Krista struggles with the program due to financial troubles at home. A middle of the cycle weigh- in reveals a disappointing with a 25 lb weight GAIN.  After  Talking with Chris Krista is rejuvenated and throws herself back into the program.  She runs a 5K and trains for a marathon.  Chris surprises her while running with a scale in hand for an ambush 6 month weigh-in.  Krista only losses 45 of the 60 lbs  promised but close enough.  Chris flies Krista out to Disneyland for a marathon runs it with her.  Old doubts rear their ugly head as Krista attempts to quit several times during the race.  Then she remembers her daughter and pushes herself to cross the finish line.

Back at home Krista experiences another setback when her daughter has seizures and she abandons the program to care for her child.  At the 9 month weigh- in Krista acknowledges she fell off the wagon and gained 30 lbs.  Understandable considering the circumstances.  Chris then proceeds to take her to the gym and makes her do  30 reps/ 30 lbs of everything.  They work out like it was the first time and get inspired all over again.

At the final weigh- in, we see a lovely reception set up.  Chris stands in front of a blown up photo of Krista in the beginning wearing a sports bra and biker shorts with her belly hanging out for all to see. Krista prances in looking much fitter and full of life.  Krista has lost a respectable 180 lbs.  Chris has built his reputation on getting clients to lose 200 lbs or more in less than a year so he seems somewhat “meh” about the whole thing.  Krista changes into her beautiful new size 18 gown and renews her vows in front of friends and family.  The end credits inform us that Krista is continuing to lose weight and is now a personal trainer.

Will there be a reunion?  Will there be a season 2?  Stay tuned…

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Girl power!  This week we meet Staci, a 30 yr old mother of two.  Staci describes herself as being bigger than the biggest person on The Biggest Loser.  I think she’s being a bit hard on herself.  Staci is Wonder Woman.  In addition to taking care of her two kids, she helps take care of her husband who is partially paralyzed from a stroke.  Staci is overwhelmed and to save time she often cuts corners by feeding her family almost exclusively fast food.  Staci really needs this intervention.

At her first weigh-in, Staci comes in at 456 lbs.  The week long boot camp shows Staci is ready to fight for her health.  Something about these boot camps always cause people to break down and have an epiphany.  I for one am rooting for her :-).  Once again we see them working with a nutritionist but the viewer is left out of the loop.  Are we supposed to wait for Chris’s book to come out to learn his secret to weight loss?  If that’s the case, I’ll pass.   These little teasers leave me NOT wanting more.

After boot camp, Chris and his back pack join Staci for a an alleged 3 month stay.  Chris has given Staci the customary at home gym and then comes the announcement of the challenge.  Staci must lose 100 lbs and her reward will be a nanny.  Cool!  A nanny is worth more than gold to a working mom.  The weigh-in arrives and Staci does it plus 6 lbs!  Yeah for Staci.  Proud of her accomplishment, Staci arranges to meet with her mother for lunch to have a heart to heart.  The only problem is Staci’s mom doesn’t have a friggin heart.  This woman is so cold and it was very sad to see Staci practically beg her mom for praise.

We get treated to a montage of Staci discussing her new eating habits and working out with her cute little girl.  Weigh-in #2 has Staci needing to lose 60 lbs.  She meets this goal and is ecstatic to be under  300 lbs for the first time in years.  Chris has arranged for Staci to train with the Dallas Fire Dept for a day.  Staci realizes how strong she has become during this challenge, there is vomit at one point, but she completes the training :-).  Chris gives Staci another 60 lb goal in order to qualify for skin reduction surgery.  This time around Staci appears to be losing momentum.  Household chores begin piling up and Staci reunites with her old friend, the bbq shack.  Staci knows she’s backsliding and in a talking head Chris reveals she hasn’t been returning his calls or emails.  The 3rd weigh-in shows Staci not only didn’t lose weight, she gained 4 lbs.  Chris wanted Staci to lose 220 +lbs but Staci reveals she’d just be happy with 200 lbs.  Way to sell yourself short with a celebrity trainer at your disposal, girlfriend :-(.  I can smell the self sabotage thru my t.v. screen…

The final weigh-in rolls around and not only has Staci lost weight, her husband who looked approx. 30-40 lbs overweight has lost 100 lbs himself!  Happy happy joy joy :-D.  Staci arrives looking hot to death.  The scale tells us she achieved her personal cop out goal of 200 lbs.  200 lbs is nothing to sneeze at and I’m happy for her.  I just wonder how far she could have gone if she hadn’t given up 2/3’s of the way in.  The credits at the end tell us she is continuing to lose weight.  I really hope there is a follow up show and we get to see Staci under 200 lbs.

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Yes I know the days are supposed to go forward not backwards.  I had every intention of starting the program, I simply just didn’t.  I posted this quote a while ago but I thought it was worth repeating:

“When a man is sufficiently motivated, discipline will take care of itself.”
– Sir Alexander Paterson

The truth is I just wasn’t motivated to do it.  I could give you several reasons (yes excuses) or try to push the blame onto my boyfriend (he was going to do it with me but that didn’t work out either) but honestly I just was not motivated yet.   I am the type of person that when I do something I do it 100%, especially when I made the commitment to blog about it here.   If I started last week I totally would have go into it half ass and I just didn’t want to do that.  I am feeling in a really good place with myself right now and the last thing I wanted to do was do something badly and feel that guilt that I seem to put upon myself.

Even though I didn’t start the program last week I had a fantastic week and even lost a lb.  I feel good about how I am eating and how I look right now.  I still weigh less than my dog and for me that is quite an accomplishment. 

I had my groceries delivered this morning and below is my order confirmation.  While it is not perfect (remember I have a 14 and a 3 year old in the house), it isn’t too shabby either.

I want to share with you what my Saturday was like.  On Friday night me, my boyfriend Jim and our 3 year old son Garrett drove down to the beach house.  Garrett and I woke up early and took a long walk to get some coffee.  When we got home we got Jake (the dog) and took another long walk.  After Jim got up the three of us walked down to the beach and played for a while.  Since it was so hot we came back home to get some lunch and cool off.  The three of us sat up on the deck blowing bubbles and laughing.  Around 4:00 we went for another long walk, played miniature golf and did some window shopping, and picked up some peal and eat shrimp for dinner.  After I gave Garrett his bath Jim then put him to bed.    Around 9:00 I went down to take an outside shower.  Have you ever taken an outside shower?  They are the best!!  My skin was nice and warm from the sun I got, my legs felt good and tight from the miles and miles we walked, my mind was peaceful and quite from the pure joy of the day and the sounds of the water.  I just had such an overwhelming feeling of contentment and it was awesome!  After my shower I lubed up with my Banana Boat after Sun Aloe Lotion, got in my comfy PJs and then Jim and I sat out on the back deck in the dark drinking a beer and listening to the Jimmy Buffett concert on the radio.   It was absolutely one of the best days I have had in a long long time.

I am not really sure why I wanted to share that with you; other than the fact that it probably would not have happened if I hadn’t made the decision back in January to get healthier.  Sure, I still would have gone down to the beach but would I have had the energy to get up so early and do all of that walking?  No way!  Would I have felt so comfortable and relaxed in a bathing suit on the beach that I could just enjoying having fun and not feel self conscious about how I looked?  No way!   By evening would I have had the energy to play mini golf?  No way!  Would I have felt so content in the shower?  No Way!  I would have probably have gotten the Fried Seafood combination for dinner, felt all fat and generally yucky and hated my body.  Would I have stayed up relaxing in a lounge chair on the deck with Jim?  No way I would have been exhausted and would have gone to bed right after Garrett.  Those are the thoughts I was thinking about on Saturday night as I drifted off to sleep with a happy little grin on my face.

So… I continue to be happy with myself and how I feel!!!  Next week when I am ready to kick some serious ass I will start Power 90. 

I hope everyone has at least one day this week where you feel like I did on Saturday!

Grocery List (Note: I get my meats from BJs or the butchershop and I stopped at a great farmer’s market in New Jersey for most of my frsh fruits and veggies)

I Cant Believe Its Not Butter Spread Tub – 15 Oz

Kraft Fat Free American Singles – 10.7 Oz

Lucerne Cheese Shredded Mozzarella Reduced Fat 2% – 8 Oz

Kraft Fat Free Cheddar Shred – 7 Oz

Lucerne Milk Low Fat 1% – Gallon

Chobani Raspberry Non-Fat Greek Yogurt – 6 Oz

Chobani Blueberry Non-Fat Greek Yogurt – 6 Oz

Chobani Peach Non-Fat Greek Yogurt – 6 Oz

Chobani Vanilla Non-Fat Greek Yogurt – 6 Oz

Laughing Cow Miniature Light Baby Bell Cheese – 4.5 Oz

1 LB Primo Taglio Roast Beef

1 LB Genuardis Domestic Cooked Ham

1 LB Primo Taglio Turkey Breast Dinner Roast

Oep Green Chili Chopped – 4 Oz

La Tortilla Factory Fat Free Whole Wheat Tortillas – 13 Oz

Skinny Cow Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwich – 6-4 Fl. Oz.

Skinny Cow Fat Free Fudge Ice Cream Bar – 6-4 Fl. Oz.

Ziploc Gallon Storage Bagsbouns Pack – 24 Count

Wonder Whole Grain White Bread – 20 Oz

Wonder Smart White Bread – 20 Oz

Pepperidge Farm Bread Whole Grain 15 Grain – 24 Oz

Shake N Bake Pork Coating Mix – 6 Oz

Sweet N Low Sugar Substitute – 8 Oz

Kraft Free 1000 Island Salad Dressing – 16 Fl. Oz.

Apples Granny Smith Extra Large


Oranges Navel Medium

Asparagus Green

Yellow Bell Peppers

Orange Bell Peppers

Green Bell Peppers

Beans Green

Broccoli Crowns


Nature Valley Snack Bar Oats N Honey Granola – 8.9 Oz

Propel Berry – 710 Ml

Propel Lemon – 710 Ml

Propel Grape – 710 Ml

Success Boil In Bag Brown Rice – 14 Oz

Eating Right Whole Grain Thin Spaghetti – 13.25 Oz

Ragu Pasta Sauce Garden Style Super Mushroom – 26 Oz

Quaker Essentials Cinnamon Oatmeal Squares Cereal – 16 Oz

Safeway Buttermilk Pancakes – 13.75 Oz

Kelloggs Special K Bar Chocolatey Pretz – 4.6 Oz

Starkist Chunk Light Tuna In Water Pouch – 2.6 Oz

Bushs Black Beans – 15 Oz

Hunts Tomato Sauce – 8 Oz

Green Giant Sweet Select Corn – 11 Oz

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This episode begins with a voice over informing us this was “A very special Extreme Makeover“.  I thought of the after school specials from childhood and episodes of “The Facts of Life”.  I had no idea the emotional roller coaster this would turn out to be.  We meet Wally, a 26 yr old married man with a hearing impaired daughter.  Wally has eaten poorly all his life but he wants to get healthy so he can be there for his daughter as she grows up.  Unlike many former clients, Wally doesn’t have any major traumas in his life that caused him to become obese.  He reveals he is haunted by childhood teasing due to his weight.  Wally acknowledges that he hasn’t a clue about healthy living and appears to be a good candidate with a great attitude.  His first weigh-in puts him at 490 lbs.  After a 1 week boot camp which mentions nutrition classes and meal plans that are kept a secret to the viewers, Wally heads back home to Chicago with Chris and his backpack.  Chris has given Wally a home gym in his basement with every piece of equipment you can imagine.  Chris gives him a 90 day challenge of 110 lbs to win a family trip to Disney World.  We get treated to a montage of clips showing Chris training Wally but no info is given once again.  Just to show off, Chris takes Wally to the Sears tower and challenges him to walk the entire 103 stories to the roof after the first 30 days of training.  Wally successfully completes the challenge and they hug it out on the roof. 😀

The real world is making things hard on Wally.  Visiting relatives bring goodies that Wally finds hard to resist.  The first weigh-in arrives and Wally meets his goal weight!  And now we must say good bye to Chris and his backpack.  Chris gives Wally a new 90 day goal of 70 lbs to be capped off with a 100 mile bike race.

With Chris gone, Wally’s talking heads start to sound like a crack addict.  He points out the plethora of fast food joints he passes every day on his commute.  Wally is shown pretending to prepare healthy meals for the mentally challenged clients he works with.  Wally spouts a lot of self affirmations.  But at the 6 month, 2nd 90 day weigh-in he looks pretty much the same as the last time we saw him.  The scale reveals only a 21 lb weight loss.  Chris rips him a new one and reduces Wally to tears.  Wally admits he’s weak and needs help.  After a heart to heart, Chris agrees to continue working with Wally but he’s gonna make him earn it.  The bike race is the next day.  The combination of 112 degree heat and lack of working out causes Wally to succumb to heat exhaustion at the halfway mark.  Wally gets taken away by medics and Chris worries that this setback will cause him to fall off track for good.

And fall off is exactly what Wally does.  Wally is shown digging into bags of chips and his talking heads reveals he has pretty much given up.  Chris tells us Wally  sent him a letter after avoiding him for over a month.  The letter sounds very suicidal and Chris gets on the next plane to offer Wally assistance.  Chris meets with Wally’s wife and shows her the food receipts being submitted to him.  His wife has no idea how Wally is getting these foods.  She is under the impression that he leaves the house with no money or credit cards.  Wally’s addict behavior is so well hidden even she isn’t aware of how bad it is.  When Wally pulls up into the driveway, the camera zooms in on a fast food bag lying in the front seat.  Wally knows he is busted.  Wally and Chris have a sit down where Wally reveals he is indeed having suicidal thoughts.  The scale is brought out and 60 lbs has been regained.  Chris tell him he needs rehab.  A local outpatient program is his area is enlisted to help and Wally goes the next day.  This episode did not have a happy ending.  There was no big reveal in front of friends and family.  They don’t give us an update at the end of the show.  Maybe we will find out his fate on the reunion show, if there is one.  I was a little disappointed with how they ended this episode.  Hopefully they will let us know how Wally is doing following treatment.


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This is a CostCo almond bar.  The plain chocolate version is listed at 870 calories.  I have no idea how many calories that thick layer of almonds adds to it but I’m guessing it pretty much straddles the 1,000 line.  This ice cream confection is my nemesis.  It is better than Haagen Das and only costs $1.50+ tax.  Frequently during the summer I will work out an extra hour to offset the damage from eating one of these behemoth monsters.  It is my weakness.

Last week my wallet was stolen. On top of an already stressful week, the theft of my wallet was truly a crushing blow.  It happened at the gym of all places.  Someone managed to cut the locks off of two lockers, find my purse underneath all the crap I jam into those lockers, and stole my wallet.  And this occurred during the morning rush.  But nobody noticed a thing….  They didn’t steal my BB or my ATM card (thank god!) but I did have a lot of membership cards to replace.

Guess what’s right down the street from my gym?  You guessed it, CostCo.  And that almond  bar was calling my name.  Offering to sooth my frayed nerves and make everything alright.  Visions of crunching that chocolatey almond crust, slurping that creamy vanilla cream center, and falling into a food coma afterwards danced in my head.  But guess what?  I didn’t do it!  Yeah, I won!  I didn’t give in and self medicate with junk food like I usually do.  I was so proud of myself :-D.  Definitely a step in the right direction…

And then came the setback.  After several days of not hearing from the management at the gym, I stopped by to ask if by chance they had recovered my wallet.  When I originally reported it to the gym, the shift manager took a report and all the front desk people swore they would search high and low for my wallet.  We all assumed the thief would dump it in the nearest trashcan after removing any cash and credit cards.  The General Manager was on duty and he informed me he had no idea there had been a theft that week.  During our conversation he informed me that there would be no increased security measures taken and actually told me it was “None of my concern, it’s a police matter now.”  Excuse me, someone is cutting off locks and ripping off your club members, you should be concerned.  He also made several other glib comments , showing his lack of professionalism.

I have since contacted corporate and lodged a complaint concerning this  incident and the theft leading to it.  But now I don’t have a gym to go to.  And I took a class every day.  I’m going thru workout withdrawal.  I’ve been doing Jillian Michaels 30 day Shed DVD, but I feel like a crack addict jonesing for a fix.  I’m trying to use this time as an opportunity to explore different options but it’s hard.  Cross your fingers for me and send out a prayer or two while you’re at it.  I need to get back in the gym soon… Peace and Blessings, Diva 😀


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Well… I did it.  I went ahead and ordered Power 90!!

Initially what really got me interested was the P90X commercial.  I figured I would check out the reviews on Amazon and there was a lot of discussion about the fitness test involved.  At the time I didn’t realize that P90X was the advanced version of Power 90.  While I would love to claim I was ready to tackle it, Power 90 is now the product for me.  That was actually a tough revelation as sometimes in my brain I still picture myself as the college athlete, not the 42 year old mother of 2.

Now I just have to get myself all set and psyched for Monday.  I’ve started reading through the materials enclosed and over the weekend I will be cleaning out my kitchen and doing some grocery shopping.  What is really interesting is that when the box arrived my boyfriend asked what I got.  When I told him he said he would like to do the program with me.  Having him doing it with me will definitely help with preparing dinner, but I am a little skeptical about the workout part.  I am not really sure how this is going to work out as 1) I was planning on doing my workouts during the day most of the time and 2) with a young son to take care of in the evenings that mean we would be doing the workouts after he goes to bed at night and since he doesn’t go to bed until after 9:00 that would be some seriously late workouts.  I will see what happens come Monday. 

My first impressions:

I really like the recipes in the “Fat Burner Food Plan”.  Some other people may think they are too basic, but they are food I already really enjoy, there is nothing complicated about any of the dishes, and all of them are very quick to prepare.  It is a very easy meal plan: 1 breakfast, 1 lunch, 1 dinner, and 1 or 2 snacks.   In addition they give you a large list of alternative foods grouped by “recommended” and “limited” so they even break down the categories like fruits and veggies even further based on calories and sugar (I think).

One thing I saw that was really interesting.  Under the Fat-Burning Oatmeal recipe its said Optional additions: 1 scoop Beachbody’s When Protein Powder*.  The * at the bottom said “We commend Beachbody’s Whey Protein Power, but you don’t have to use ours.  Feel free to substitute whatever is convenient.  We just happen to know the quality and content of our product, which is why we recommend it.”   For some reason I really liked the honesty in that footnote.  Yes it was probably worded very carefully by some marketing genius just for that purpose but I will admit it worked for me.

I will be writing about my experiences through the program.  This is actually very selfish of me.  By making to commitment to write about it I am so much more likely to see it through!!   Stay tuned as I will share my impressions about the rest of the material I received over the weekend, then Monday is the big day!  Did I mention that I already looked to see when I will be done?  My graduation date if you will is October 4th.  I think a trip to some warm place with blue water will be in order for October.

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