Sunday, June 5, 2011

Slimmer this Summer Challenge: Week 1

I had fully intended to begin the challenge a few days early. I (along with my friend Nicole or Colie as I like to call her) thought it would be a great idea to begin the challenge at the beginning of the month. I'm not sure how Colie did these past couple of days, but I simply wasn't ready.

So, what are my goals for this challenge? I've been thinking about this challenge for a few weeks now and really my ultimate goal is to be able to keep up with my 2 year old! I know realistically, I'll never have her unstopping energy, but I'd like to at least look like I can keep up! Also, I'd like to feel comfortable getting my picture taken!  Most often, I'm the one snapping the photos.  But there are those few occasions that Joe has the camera and is taking pictures of me with Grace.  A lot of times, I'm trying to hide behind her.  Sometimes it's just me feeling all fat and uncomfortable.  I don't want to feel that way anymore.  That will involve some serious weightloss!

For some background information and before photos, click the Weight Loss tab at the top. 

Here's what I'm hoping to achieve in the next 12 weeks:

Eat fewer calories:
  • While this is not my first diet, calorie counting isn't something I'm familiar with at all.  I joined to help me figure the calories for those foods that don't come in packages!  They also have a recipe builder that will be a huge help! suggests I limit my calories to 1390 per day.  That's puts me right there in the challenge specifications of 10,000 per week.  After doing a "test run" the other day, I realize it's going to be a real challenge in itself!  I'll be checking out Debbi's other blog (Debbi Does Dinner Healthy) for great low-calorie meal ideas! 

Keep a Food Journal: 
  • This works!  I used to do this when I lost weight using Weight Watchers Online.  It worked the best if I planned ahead.  Sort of like Menu Planning.  With WWonline, I journaled using their online program.  MyFitnessPal offers a journaling program, too.  I'll also use a notebook, for me, that sometimes works best. 

Drink WATER: 
  • I wish this said "Drink MORE water" but in reality, I need to START drinking water.  Diet Pepsi is always my drink of choice, especially first thing in the morning!  I'm not a coffee/tea drinker so I have to get my caffeine somewhere!  Eight glasses of water each day is my goal.  More will be a bonus!!! 

Healthier snack options:
  • I'm a huge snacker!  I love snacks and often find myself JUST snacking all day.  At dinner time, when I think back to what I ate all day, I find that all I did was snack for the entire day.  That's bad.  Well, it wouldn't be so bad if it was a rare occasion, but this happens most days.  That's really bad.  I need to keep the house stocked with healthier snack options:  an apple, some cut veggies and dip, Fiber One Bars (my favorite!), etc. 
  • This will be difficult.  Not only is it difficult for me to get motivated to exercise, it's also difficult to find the time.  For now, I want to plan on exercising 3 times a week.  I'll start off slow, since really, I'm WAY OUT OF SHAPE!  I have an exercise bike in the  basement.  I'll get a workout just trying to dig out a clear spot for it!  I have WiiFit and I also have a Walk Away the Pounds DVD.  I'll see what Comcast On Demand is offering in their fitness section, too!  I might be able to get Grace to do the walking DVD with me. 

Lose Weight: 
  • Obviously, I want all of those previous goals to result in some weight loss!  My ultimate goal is 64 lbs.  But since this is just a twelve week challenge, not only is it unlikely that I'd lose that much, it also wouldn't be safe to lose so much so quickly.  I'd love to lose 20 lbs. in 12 weeks, but for me, I'm not sure if that would be a possibility.  So, I'll set 15 lbs. as my goal weightloss for the challenge.  If I end up losing more, that would be a bonus! 
I'm looking forward to sharing my progress each week with my fellow Slimmer this Summer Challengers as well as with the rest of the Under the Big Oak Tree readers.  I hope to share some inspiration and any tips I find useful in the weeks to come! 

If you want to find out more about the Slimmer this Summer Challenge, follow me over to Debbi's dieting blog (Debbi Does Dieting)! 

Good luck, everyone! 


Princess Dieter aka Mir said...

It's very hard to get started..the beginning is the toughest. I was once, like you a non-water drinker. Some days, I had a cup (to take meds). Yep... that was it.

Now, I've built up the habit of drinking 2 to 3 cups of water BEFORE I EAT. Then drink 2 cups of coffee or tea of some low cal beverage while eating or right after. This way, I can get it in with meals and not think so much about it. It's just a habit. I drink water while fixing the food. Then get in a few more glasses with meds and after exercise.

It helps cut down appetite.

When I first cut down to 1700 and was hungry, adding a lot of water helped. When I cut down to 1200, water was essential for appetite control. I now see it like people see the lap band: it's the thing that fills me up so I can't eat too much. :)

Try the 2 to 3 glasses while making meals, right before you eat. Might help.

And start with 10 mins a day of exercise...your body will gradually get used to it. Even if it's just walking...I started my walks in January...5 min warm up, 8 mins walking, 2 minutes cooldown. I can now walk 45 mins, with 5/5 warm/cooldowns. I never could walk that before without my knees and ankles just giving out with pain.

It's possible. Small gain by small gain. I have a tab under my blog's header called PHAT PILATES that shows me doing Pilates from 278 lbs on down. It was crazy hard to just MOVE at that size, but I persisted. Now, I get comlimented by the various dancers/instructors for my good form. Makes me happy. :)

You can do it. We all can. It's hard, but worth it.

I'll be praying for all the challengers. Be well...

Anonymous said...

Those are some wonderful goals! I think you can find the time to exercise, we all struggle with it. Just make it an absolute, kind of like brushing your teeth. You wouldn't leave the house unless you did it. Best of luck!

Anonymous said...

I'm following your link through Debi's challenge. Great goals! I look forward to getting to know you better and celebrating your success!

I know you'll be amazed. I have a hunch you will exceed your goals!:-)

Colie's Kitchen said...

I did horrible last week Alison! Tomorrow is a new day, and you know I always have your back. We are in this together the good... the bad... and the fat LOL ;-)

Julie said...

Alison, you can do this. Your goals are wonderful, managable and so doable. Take it one day at a time. Drink the water, it will help with every other goal. 16 months ago I couldn't walk to my mailbox without thinking I was going to die, now I jog/ran my 1st 5K (3rd one total). It's taken me time and lots of patience and hard work but you can do it, yes you can!!!
I am going to follow you and encourage you every step of the way.
Take care and Good luck!! Blessings.

Karyn said...

Hey Alison! So glad to be in this challenge with you! I think your goals look great. And believe it or not, you might actually develop a real love for water. I never would have thought that was possible, but after several months of making the effort a bottle of water is the first thing I reach for in the morning and I crave it all day. Who knew, right?

Debbi Does Dinner Healthy said...

Princess dieter has great advice. It IS hard at first, but it will get easier. You need to be the example for your little one and she will appreciate a nice healthy mama!! I believe in you and I KNOW you can do this! :-)

Kristy said...

I found you through Debbi's link. I'm so excited to see so many people doing the challenge. I'm just like you with the water. I'm a diet Coke addict and that's where I get my caffiene. The water will be the hardest part for me. Good luck and I'm looking forward to watching your progress.


Mercy said...

Water is a good goal, I find keeping a full water bottle with me at ALL times helps so so much!

I am a snacker too, always my downfall. I wish you so much luck and hope you achieve your goals during the challenge. :)

downsizers said...

Don't be afraid. Keeping yourself calm when hunger happens is key. THINK - hunger is not fatal (we tend to over-react and panic)- try to think of hunger as a good thing; your body will be using stored fat for energy if you are truly empty as that growl signifies. Get moving - don't sit and try to wait it out, watching the clock until time to eat - go outside and work in the yard or wash a window or something - the hunger will pass within 15 minutes. It will come around again and you will be so proud of yourself for not giving in and letting your body control you. YOU are in control now.

1FitMama said...

Great goals! I am in the challenge too and I completely understand where you are coming from. Getting started is usually not hard for me, but I tend to fall off the wagon about 1 to 2 weeks in. I am determined it's not going to happen this time! We'll all keep each other motivated! I believe in you!!!

Empty Nester said...

I have made use of Debbie's recipes too- we had two of them last night and YUMMY! Drinking that much water is one of my biggest hurdles- I'm not a fan of water. Good luck with the challenge! I actually excited about it!

Anonymous said...

Excellent Goals! The water is crucial - so is ditching the caffeine. You can do it!

Michele said...

Found you through the Slimmer Challenge. Your goals sound realistic. We will all support each other as we work hard to get healthier and fit. Best of luck to you. Michele at

Tiffanee said...

These are great ideas!! Going to implement them into my life. Glad I am not the only Diet Pepsi addict!!

Unknown said...

I have a long history of dieting but I'm just restarting today with this challenge after a few years of not trying & just regaining what I lost in the past. I thought it would be harder but all went well. I'm shooting for 20 since I'm starting fresh I'm expecting good things the first few weeks:-)

Lizzie said...

Hey, I really like your blog! I was born a country girl, and now I'm raising my daughter as a country girl but I lived in New York (the city, that is) for almost twenty years in the middle.

And I'm starting STS from a "no water" standpoint, too. I got in five glasses yesterday and thought I was going to float away!!!

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Hello ! A fellow STS Challenger here. Great set of realistic goals. Drink water, eat less and more more = success ! Good Luck !

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