Thanks to Random.org, the winner of the giveaway is #45:
I need one of these, my medication makes me sweat profusely during workouts and this would be awesome!
Thanks to everyone who participated and keep your eyes out for our next giveaway…
Let me just start this off by saying I freakin’ love these Sweaty Bands. It is exactly what I have been looking for. There are a ton of cute designs, but they work really well.
I reached out to Sweaty Bands for a couple samples and they happily obliged. They even said I could give one away to my awesome readers, but we will get to that later.
I wanted to put Sweaty Bands through the ringer.
On Saturday, I decided to wear the thicker multi-colored band just out and about as I ran errands. Basically, I didn’t want my first experience with it to be during my 8k run the next day because if it bothered me I would’ve thrown it on the ground and never looked back. But I digress, it was super cute and stayed in place the entire day. I did not have to fuss or mess with it once, which is so refreshing. I was worried since the band was thicker that it would poke the back part of my ears, but thankfully it didn’t!
On Sunday, I wore it again during my 8k run. It was perfect. It didn’t move. My wisps stayed out of my face. It actually held up through a downpour that ocurred for the last mile of the run. Plus, it looked cute with my running outift … which is always a nice bonus
On Monday, I decided to give the thinner band a try. I wore it all day at work and everyone complimented me on the cute new headband I had on. But, what was even better, was how easy it transititioned to the night. I went straight from work to the gym and it survived a nice 45 min date with the Stairmaster.
On Tuesday came a new challenge. I wore the skinny band to the gym, but also had to wear my glasses for awhile. I was worried the side part of the frames (ie the “earpiece”) would dig in the band that would in turn dig into my head. But, it didn’t. I could feel the earpiece for about 5 minutes then the feeling went away. That may have been more on me since I so rarely wear my glasses.
I really enjoyed the versatility of the bands! They can be used during the day and at the gym, which is a great way to get the most bang for your buck!
And now the fun part … the giveaway! Sweaty Bands has agreed to give one lucky reader of my blog the Sweaty Bands above.
Here is how to enter:
*Please leave the following comment on the blog below: “I Want One!” … I will take responses until 9am CT Friday (September 30). The winner will be picked at random … Good luck!
Okay so let me start this off by saying I am incredibly honored to have been invited to the opening of the Weight Watchers Jennifer Hudson Center this morning (now here comes the but) … but, it wasn’t the experience I thought it would be.
Thankfully my wife was able to attend the event with me.
I didn’t really know what to expect. I had a rough outline, but no specifics. It said there would be media and to dress business casual. So I stressed over an outfit since I don’t have many that fit and decided on my cute green Ann Taylor Loft dress (thanks Linds). I didn’t know if I was going to have to talk or greet people. Maybe I would meet Jennifer Hudson, but probably not!
We arrived at the center and stood in line with my current and former WW leaders, both named Lisa. We waited there until the “Success Stories” were called. We entered the center – wow it is nice and new! We were told to sit wherever there were open seats. It wasn’t until I was seated that I noticed my picture and inspirational quote were on the wall (cool!). We were serenaded by the group, Soul Children Chicago. They kicked butt! They were wicked talented and a pleasure to listen to. They ended with an amazing rendition of God Bless America. Then the WW person got to the podium and kicked off the event. Once she was done, she turned it over to Jennifer Hudson. OMG, she is HOTT! She doesn’t look too skinny in person. She looks healthy, which I love. She had great things to say about WW and her own leader, who was in the front row.
After Jennifer spoke, the mayor of Chicago Rahm Emanuel got on stage to say a few words. His portion was a little too “political” for me, but it was a huge honor to have him at the opening. Once, he finished, they started shuttling people outside for the ribbon cutting. I stayed back so I could take a pic of my pic on the wall. I had to!
So we all trekked outside in the rain for the ribbon cutting. Now, at this point, my email said we were to go back inside or mingling and a tour. Apparently not, I went back inside with my wife and nothing. They were asking us to leave – saying the event was over. So, I think there was some miscommunication on the part of WW.
Thankfully, I was able to talk them into letting my wife take a pic of me with my pic on the wall. I mean c’mon, I needed to do that
But, after that, we left and headed back home to head back to work.
Overall, it was a cool thing to say I was a part of. I am more inspired to continue on and to finally hit goal.
Here are some pictures that my wife took. Enjoy!
So I actually received a tweet from Lululemon today asking me how my new running outfit worked. I decided instead of trying to tweet back to them and be limited to 140 characters that I would write up a quick review here.
Here is what I wore:
Let me just say I LOVED both.
I don’t usually run with a jacket so I knew that would be a 50-50 chance of liking it or not. At first, I was getting hot, but then thought that would help burn more calories. But, as the run went on, I didn’t really notice any extra sweating and didn’t realize I was really wearing the jacket – since it was so light. It then started to rain about halfway through the run and the jacket came in handy. It kept the rain off me, but I didn’t feel like the jacket got heavy after it was wet. Which is great.
The pants were a small pain at the beginning of the run. They started riding down a little bit, but after making some adjustments during the first mile of the run – everything was fine. I enjoyed the contained feeling of the pants without feeling self-conscious that my butt was jiggling around. (always a good thing)
The women at the store told me you can use the pants in other cardio activities as well, but I think I am going to save them for running only.
Overall, I would definitely recommend these pieces to anyone looking for a new Fall running outfit!
I can’t believe today’s race was my first since the Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon August 14. I really missed racing. I definitely had those butterflies in my stomach while I was standing at the start line … and I loved it.
My wife wasn’t able to run today because of her ankle/being sick, but she still came out to support me/take pictures (you can catch her awesome slideshow at the end of this post). My friend Ellie was sick all week, but thankfully was feeling good enough today to still participate in the run. We have a pretty similar pace so I was stoked to actually have a running buddy (usually I run all races solo).
There didn’t seem to be that many runners so I was confident we would be able to get into a good rhythm. They also had us run along the Lakefront, which I used all the time for my Half Marathon training so I knew the course well.
We started out together and strong and didn’t look back! We hit the first mile in 9:45. I looked at El and she agreed that we were at a good pace. But, as we bobbed and weaved throughout the crowd, our pace sped up! When we hit Mile Two, I think we were at a 9:12 pace. Wow! I was proud of us, but was really hoping I wasn’t going to burn out too early.
My body felt strong as we hit the turnaround mark at Mile 2.5 … then the rain hit. I knew there was a possibility it was going to rain, but was really hoping it would hold off. Nope! It started at the turnaround point, but thankfully hit our backs as we turned and headed to the finish. When we got to about mile 3.5, I decided to tail it back a little so I could really break out during the final mile. Since at that time, I realized we were going at about a 9:04 min/mile.
I was hoping to finish in less than 50 min (since that would be 10 min/mile pace), but when I saw that a sub-45 min time was in my reach, I knew I had to go all out. As we hit Mile 4, we took it to a new level. I just went off. Thankfully a good song came on the iPod, which helped. I turned at Mile 4 and BAM! Hill. Ok people, who puts a hill in the last mile of a race But, I powered up it. I felt good. As I made it up over the hill, the rain started coming down even harder, which pushed me to keep going.
I was adjusting my iPhone so I could turn off my Runkeeper as I passed the finish line, but somehow turned it off. All of a sudden I heard “you completed a 4.72 mi run.” Nooooo I yelled (literally out loud). I was bumming. But, that told me I was at a 8:58 min/mile pace. So I had to power on. I just told myself to run as fast as I could.
I crossed the line and the board said 44:15. I knew I started about 30 seconds after the clock started so that took me to an unofficial 43:45. Then came the waiting for the official results…
I finally got them! 43:43, good for a pace of 8:48 min/mile. DAMN! I have never run that fast. Wow I was proud of myself. Ellie finished just 16 seconds behind me. We rocked it!
I felt awesome the entire run. No back/hip/knee/foot problems to report. Now I cannot wait ’til my next run … Bucktown 5k October 2!
Check out my wife’s awesome slideshow from today…
Yesterday morning I had a rough mental start to the day. Do you all have that? I was getting ready for work, doing my makeup and looking in the mirror. But, all I saw staring back at me, was my old overweight face. Staring back at me was the 217 lb version of myself. So often, I still think of myself as that overweight person. I can’t shake it. I know so much of losing weight and transforming your body is also transforming the mental aspect. That is by far my toughest challenge.
How do you do it?
Last night, I had a happy weightloss moment. I put on my bridesmaids dress from my friend’s wedding in December 2009, zipped it up … and it fell off me. I could actually get it over my hips while it was still zipped. Yay! That was crazy.
But, as soon as I took it off and put my normal clothes back on, I went right back into the usual mentality of … I have more to lose. I need to work on my stomach. I need to work on my love handles. I need to work on my thighs. Why won’t they just get smaller.
Those are the constant thoughts in my mind. I can enjoy a victory for a moment or so, but as soon as I am over it – my mind goes back to what I still need to fix.
Today, I had a major weight loss moment. I went to Lululemon to get some new workout clothes (since I wear the pants I have now on a daily basis). I immediately went for the biggest sizes in the store (12), but when the woman handed me the jacket she actually gave me a 10 … and it fit. Say whhaaa?? It fit. I could close it.
Then I went to get new pants and the woman wanted to suggest a pair of pants made for running. She went off to get the pants and I put them on without looking … they were a size 10. Say whhaaa?? They fit.
Everyone at the store thought it looked amazing. All I could think of was: my thighs look huge! My butt is saggy. I think you can see my rolls on the side.
Same thing happened with this outfit:
I allowed myself to purchase these outfits – trusting the people around me that they were being honest with me that I looked okay in them … since I didn’t trust my own thoughts.
There are days, ok everyday, that I wish I could just look at myself and be happy. I know this is a mental thing I need to work through, but it just doesn’t seem to be happening. I am always looking forward rather than truly appreciating where I have come from. I can appreciate it for a moment or two before my mind reverts back.
I do the same thing with compliments. I accept them as I hear them, but as soon as it is done – my mind immediately negates it with something I could be doing better. For example, someone the other day said you should be so happy to have completed a Half Marathon … all I could respond with was, “Sure, I just wish I could’ve run it faster.” My mind took the compliment and immediately flipped it.
Since I have been overweight for so long, I have gotten really good at self-depricating humor. I mean, if I made fun of myself first it would then stop someone else from making fun of me. Well, my mind just can’t stop it. I can’t give myself a compliment or allow myself to enjoy a success without pointing out how I could’ve done it better or how someone else rocked it more.
All of this really comes to head when people say to be “you are an inspiration.” My mind just can’t wrap around that. I see all these other people who have lost two or three times the weight I have and find them to be the inspirations! I want to help people and love turning people on to Weight Watchers and fitness, but I do not consider myself among the inspirations that are out there.
I want to be positive. I want to accept the compliments. I want to inspire. I want to accept me.
How do you overcome the doubting inner demons?
I cannot dance. I was in jazz, tap and ballet when I was little, but was quickly kicked out of ballet for not being graceful enough. I stuck with tap and jazz for longer, but switched over to gymnastics around 10 or 11 (roughly). But, when I got the high school, I smartly switched to sports and never looked back. (Disclaimer: I tried out for cheerleading freshman year, but got cut very quickly).
I enjoy dancing, but I am not very good at it. I am not a “clubbing” type person. I have tried and I am bad. I am better at watching than participating unless I have had a few adult beverages or I am surrounded by friends and therefore am not thinking about what other people are thinking (as much).
A lot of my friends were getting into the craze that is Zumba staring last year. I always wanted a give it a try since it seemed like a great workout without having to spend an hour on a machine. So, I finally built up the courage last year to attend a Zumba class at my gym. Wow! It was fun! I am lucky. My gym is located in the gayborhood of Chicago so we had one awesomely gay instructor, who blared JLo!
I liked the group because it was a good mix of women, gay men and straight men! Those three straight guys who hung out in the back left corner of the room were my favorite to watch! The class was fun and I tried not to look at myself in the mirror. I met a girl Steph in the class and we became friends as we both hung out in the back right corner of the room together.
I started going to Zumba every Thursday night at 8:30 until my back injury in December 2010. I had to stop all activity until May. Once I got the go ahead from my doc, he banned all exercises where I really had to move my hips, which would this twist my back. So I still couldn’t go back to Zumba.
Well, last week I met with my PT again and she said I could resume all activities so I looked it up and the Zumba class was still on Thursday nights … but with a new instructor.
I went last night. I thought about it. I had lost about 20 lbs since I was last in that room. But, for some reason. I felt more aware of my body. I couldn’t believe I was going to have to look at myself for the next hour. The hour made me remember how uncoordinated I am. How I have no rhythm. How I still have wait to lose. Flab to fix. But, overall …
I. Had. A. Blast!
The group was all women. The new instructor stuck to more International music, but the moves were familiar. It was one helluva workout … and I can’t wait ’til next week.
Also, I really hope the gramma I was next to is back … lady can booty pop like the best of ‘em!
What exercise have you done recently that took you out of your comfort zone?
Jessie had our favorite way in which to rock a Bondi Band:
“You know how a super hero always has a cape? Well, if I had a Boni Band, it would be my version of a cape. I’d wear it when I worked out, and it would help me focus on becoming stronger and healthier. With my Bondi Band, I’d be invincible. ”
Thanks to everyone who participated and keep your eyes out for our next giveaway…
I don’t know if you all have a problem keeping your hair out of your face when you are working out, but I sure do. Damn curls! Well, for years I have been using the cheap headbands from Walgreens/CVS, but I find they stretch out wicked easy and don’t work all that well after a couple wears. Also, they are usually just a boring color like black or brown…
So, I finally started doing some research and found Bondi Band online.
I reached out to the wonderful ladies there and they sent me one to try out. (Comments/Thoughts are my own)
I am bad at taking self photos, but you know I had to pick the one with the Shamrocks all over it. They had a ton of designs and different types of bands/hats that you can choose from.
Well, I gave it a whirl last night at Zumba and really liked it. It definitely kept my hair out of my face and didn’t give me the “halo of curls” I usually have after a workout.
Here is a side shot:
So you can tell the band is pretty wide. When I first put it on it covered my ears, which I didn’t like. I guess that would work well for outside activites (ie fall running), but it just bothered me while inside. Then my lovely wife suggested just tucking it behind my ears (she is so smart). That felt much more comfortable. The only problem with that was that it buldged up a little behind my ears due to the extra fabric. It bothered me while I was just sitting there, but once I was focused on Zumba, I didn’t notice it at all (which is all that matters).
I am a big sweater. It is just my nature. The band was able to remain dry during the workout and I didn’t feel any extra sweat in my hair due to the width of the band.
It didn’t slip or slide at all during my workout, which I appreciated. I didn’t have to fuss or fix it once. I hate when I need to alter any of my wardrobe, while I am in the middle of a workout.
So overall, I would give the Bondi Band an A-. I would definitely rock it again … and I will tonight at the gym!
And now the fun part … the giveaway! Bondi Band has agreed to give one lucky reader of my blog a Bondi Band of their own.
Here is how to enter:
*Please leave a comment on the blog below telling me how you would rock a Bondi Band if you won! I will take responses until 11:59am CT tomorrow and is only open to residents of the United States. Good luck!
Hey All! So sorry for the delay in posting, but I have had one busy day at work.
Well, this week definitely did not go as planned as I … gained 1.4 lbs. Boo!
Starting Weight: 217.4
Today’s Weight: 167.2
Total Lost: 50.2
Pounds From Lowest: 1.4
Pounds From Goal: 3.2
These final three lbs really do not want to leave my body! I am not okay with this. I am trying my hardest. Okay Okay! Not my hardest, but I am still trying.
This past weekend was really trying emotionally. Nothing seemed to go the way I had planned. My 29th birthday was not at all what I had expected and I just got beat. I tried to head to the gym to work out the frustration, but I also turned to some snacking. I really thought I had gauged the points correctly, but apparently I did not. I really did not want to turn to emotional eating to deal with my stress/hurt/disappointment, but I guess I did. Old habits are hard to break. This journey is ongoing and I cannot change who I am overnight. I think I definitely snacked less than in the past, but I didn’t dominate, deal and overcome the emotions like I would’ve wanted.
But, I am done. I don’t want to be upset. I don’t want to be hurt. I don’t want to be depressed. I don’t want to be sad anymore. It is time to look at the positives … and get some more “me” time in my life. I realized this weekend that I really don’t have anything outside of work that I can put my heart and soul into. My wife has hockey. My friends have hobbies. I have work and working out. And I love working out, but sometimes you want more. I have running, but sometimes you want more. I have blogging, but sometimes you want more. Are we getting my drift?
This week I am going to take some “me” time. Thursday night I am going to attempt Zumba for the first time since my back injury in December. Friday night I am going to try to have a puppy date with Ellie. Saturday I am going to treat myself to some new clothes at Lululemon with birthday money. Sunday I am going to dominate the PAWSChicago 8k with Ellie. There is a game plan. I will report how I am feeling after this weekend on Monday. Hopefully I feel a little better as work begins to wind down and the stress returns to a more normal level.
Oh! I almost forgot. The best part of the past few weeks has finally been approved. I am going to be speaking at a Weight Watchers center opening on Tuesday, September 27 as a success story. Now, at first, I didn’t think I fit the criteria either, since I haven’t hit goal yet. But, my leader Lisa (who asked me to participate) and the nice person from WW HQ told me I have been successful enough to participate. I am not sure what exactly I will be doing, but I am really happy to share my journey with others and try to help them out as best I can. Now wish me luck that I don’t stumble and bumble in front of the nice group of WW newbies!
How did Truth Tuesday go for you all?
Thankfully I was not dreading this weigh-in as much as I did last week. I mean I have had a rough last few weeks weight loss wise and figured I was due for a good one and …
I lost 4.4 lbs! YAY!
Starting Weight: 217.4
Today’s Weight: 165.8
Total Lost: 51.6
Pounds From Goal: 1.8
I cannot believe I am that close to goal. I am happy to be back above the 50 lb loss. I wanted to return to that mark before I turn 29 on Friday. I KNOW, I am almost 30 therefore basically 40! (I am not a big fan of my birthday)
This week was great. I got back to the basics (just like last week’s topic). I planned out my days in the morning – leaving plenty of wiggle room to adjust throughout the day. But, I really thrive on having a guideline at least. As mentioned before, I have also been focusing on hitting all 5 Healthy Guidelines each day and I think it is actually helping. Crazy, huh? WW has you do something that makes you feel good.
I also stood up for myself this week and was pretty pumped. My wife’s family wanted to take us to Olive Garden to celebrate my birthday, but I wasn’t feeling it. So instead of just going along with the plan to appease everyone (especially my wife who was wicked excited to go), I told her I would rather have a home cooked meal. It was great. Her dad grilled some chicken, while her mom made homemade bread, green beans and mashed potatoes. I definitely stayed more on plan with that meal than by having a ton of breadstick and salad at Olive Garden.
Here is a shot of my Weigh-In Wear:
My wife does WW online and I am so happy that she does. Not only does it help her and her weight loss journey, but it keeps me more on track as well. We work to encourage each other and keep healthy options in the house. Her weigh-in day is also Tuesday, but since she does it online only she doesn’t attend a meeting to weigh-in – she does it at home. So now it is a family thing.
We both weigh-in at 8am on Tuesday morning on the super cool Runkeeper Withing Scale that has wifi so it sends your weight, fat % & BMI to a website where you can track it. Yes, I am easily impressed by technology
I love that we do this. Not only because it is good support for her, but it also gives me an idea of how the scale will treat me at my WW meeting a few hours later. I thrive on the meetings, clapping, hardware and having people around that I couldn’t imagine doing the program online only so I am happy to be part of my wife’s journey in whatever way I can.
Being so close to goal is crazy. I mean I set that number back on November 2, 2009 and honestly never thought I would see it on the scale and now it is within my grasp. My doctor would like me to lose 9 lbs after I hit my goal so that is currently being tabled in my mind. If I can, great. But if I can’t, that is okay too since my goal is my first priority. My goal will put me at the top of the healthy range on the BMI for my height. I have never been in that range so I am beyond excited to finally be “healthy.” (Note: I know not everyone loves the BMI, but that is also the top of the healthy range for my height according to WW)
What are you going to do when you hit a weight-loss, running or activity goal? Any suggestions for me? I am looking for a non-food related celebration! When I hit 40 lbs, I got myself a heart-shaped Tiffany necklage. When I hit 50 lbs, I got myself a massage.