Well, hello there…

I have been in a funk for months now. Although life has been great and I have had some wonderful adventures and created many fabulous memories when it comes to my weight loss journey I have been in a rut.

And until a few days ago I didn’t know why.

Or maybe I did but just didn’t want to admit it.

But the cat is out of the bag now. I have realized where I went wrong and the changes I need to make to get back on track and I am more than ready to make them.

Here’s the short version of what I’m talking about; well maybe not short but it’s the shortest version I can give you.

I went into 2012 seeking balance in my life. I had spent the previous 10 months dedicating 100% of my time to my weight loss journey. I spent my evenings at fitness classes, weekend activities were planned around workouts, I was constantly tweaking my diet to find out what worked best for my body and I experienced great results because of it. By Christmas I had lost 100 pounds in just 10 months and I was beyond the moon excited.

Although I couldn’t have been happier about my weight loss I was definitely feeling the toll those months had put on me. I had no social life. I barely saw my husband. I was borderline obsessive with my weight. I needed a break. I needed balance.

And so, 2012 started with my search for balance. I decided to ease up a bit and focus more of my attention on the aspects of my life I had neglected, namely my husband, as well as set some different goals/aspirations for myself. I was ready to start running. Something Paul does and enjoys doing and something I had always hoped to do with him. My focus was now on the only goal I had set for myself – run an entire 5K. I steadily progressed through the 8 week Couch to 5K program and at the end was able to run my first 5K, which I did in 34 minutes and 4 seconds! Paul and I also bought road bikes and took up cycling. I was enjoying my new hobbies.

I was also enjoying all of the fun activities Paul and I were partaking in; hockey games, beer tastings, parties, and lots of relaxing at home watching TV.

I was definitely bringing my focus back towards the areas of my life I had been neglecting but somewhere along the way I went from one end of the spectrum to the other. I hadn’t found balance, I found social Dacia. And I welcomed her back with open arms.

My life had gone from a constant focus on my weight loss to a constant focus on fun. I found myself becoming less active, some days even skipping workouts, but I was completely oblivious to this change in mindset since I was pretty much maintaining my weight. I had some fun new hobbies that were keeping me (somewhat) active, I was still following a vegan diet, and I still felt I was putting my health first but was I really?

I think what had happened was this- I was doing was enough to get by and that kept me feeling like I was still committed to my journey. However, it kept me from really making much progress this year and that has really started to wear on me. Bouncing between the same few pounds week in and week out, who needs it? Definitely not me.

Then the other night I was talking with Paul and he made a comment in regards to my fitness. He said;

“You write in your blog and tell others about how they need to find what makes them happy and yet you stopped doing everything you love. You stopped boxing, you stopped Nia, and you took up running which you don’t even enjoy.”

Yep. His comment was spot on.

Yes, I had my reasons for stopping my group exercise classes and at the time I thought swapping them for running and other standard gym activities would be no big deal.

And maybe it would have been no big deal if I had the same passion for running, the stationary bike and swimming that I had for the group exercise classes. But I don’t.

To say I enjoy running would be a half truth. I enjoyed setting a goal and achieving it but the training, the boring days on the treadmill, the solitude- eh, blah. That’s kind of how I feel. I plan on continuing to run but for fun. For me. When I feel like it. Out on the trails. Not on a treadmill. Not following a set training schedule. I’m just not that person. No matter how hard I try to convince myself otherwise. Maybe one day. But not now.

So after a few conversations with Paul about what I want to start doing again (Nia, yoga, Journey Dance, spin class) and what new things I want to try (crossfit, body pump, boot camp, TRX) we have come up with a plan on how I will get back into my happy place in regards to my workouts and still continue to have a life as well. A plan to find balance.

This Sunday I will be returning to the Synergy Studio and I will start back with some Nia, yoga, and Journey Dance classes. I won’t be going every day because there are other things I want to do but going 1-2 times a week will help bring focus on the self-love/self-worth aspect of this journey. Those classes, in that studio, bring me calmness and inner peace and help me grow and heal both my physical and mental state.

Paul and I will also be taking advantage of a two week trial pass we have for the YMCA. The closest Y to where we live (which is literally down the street from Synergy) offers a crap ton of evening classes that would work into both of our schedules. They have multiple spin classes daily. They offer yoga, Pilates, and Tai Chi as well as the more challenging classes I crave like boot camp, boxing and TRX. Plus they even have a rock climbing wall. How cool?
I think we are both optimistic that we will like the classes and trainers there and will be joining the YMCA after our trial period is up.

I am also excited because they offer early classes so I can hit up a class after work, shower, and still have time to hit up our favorite watering hole for a beer every now and again.

We can still enjoy our long bike rides together and then spend time with friends.

I can dance a Nia routine with some of the most amazing women I have ever met and then curl up with a book afterwards.

To me, that is balance.

And that’s what I need right now.

I’ll be sure to keep you posted on how the next few weeks play out. I am glad to be back. I’ve missed you guys. But I needed this break. I hope you understand. Sometimes things have to get worse before they can get better and I think the worst is over now. I’m ready to recommit myself to this journey, and to this blog, and start being accountable again. Are you with me?

Thanks for reading! 🙂

P.S. for those of you that have been reading this blog for awhile may remember that I had set a reward for myself that when I hit the halfway mark to my weight loss goal I would go ziplining. Well the timing didn’t really work out and that reward kept getting pushed to the backburner. Well, you’ll be happy to know that I finally bought a ziplining package (through Groupon, yay!) and I hope to use it in the next few weeks. Post and pics to come 🙂

May 18, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . Fitness, Life, Weight Loss. 2 comments.

Five Things Friday

Shrinkvivor

Well, last night’s Shrinkvivor results were not quite what I was hoping for. Of course you know I was hoping that Tribe Hodari Gray would have had immunity again but unfortunately that did not happen. Sadly we lost one of our tribe mates but thankfully it wasn’t me. Unfortunately the person who was eliminated from our tribe was not sent to exile but instead has been eliminated from the game completely since she failed to check in; failure to check in automatically disqualifies you from the game. Not sure how we faired exercise minutes wise but having a tribe mate not record any (since she didn’t check in) probably significantly hurt our tribe’s odds at winning immunity. Oh well, there is always next week.

The Health Snob

I saw this post yesterday (go read it, it’s only a few sentences) and initially it made me laugh. Then it made me a little bit nervous. Am I a health snob? I truly hope not. I know I do talk a lot about my changing diet and what new foods I am (or am not) eating and things I have tried but I hope that none of you feel that I am trying to force upon you my lifestyle especially when it comes to food. I understand that all of us, regardless of whether or not we are trying to lose weight, eat differently. That’s why I try to speak in generalities when I give advice or talk about things that work for me. Just because giving up dairy has helped my digestion does not mean that it will do the same for you. I don’t care what you eat nor will I ever judge you because of it and hopefully you feel that way about me as well 🙂 If I am ever acting like a health snob please call me out on it. I won’t hold it against you. Oh, and that banana really is the worst possible fruit you can eat 😉 JK

Video Blog

I only received one comment in regards to whether or not my next vlog should be a cooking one or a Q&A one and since the comment said Q&A that is what I am going to go with. So, please submit any questions you might have for me, no topic is off-limits, and send them in via comments, tweets, email, etc. and if I get some in quickly enough I might be able to film it this weekend. Also, if there is anything you want to see in the vlog, not sure what you would want to see, let me know and I will try to include that too.

Halloween

I love Halloween. I love costumes and dressing up and of course all of the CANDY! Paul, however, is not a big fan of the holiday, or at least not a fan of dressing up. There have been a few times he dressed up for costume parties but now, forget it. He just isn’t interested. However, this year we will be dressing up on October 28th because we volunteered to help run the haunted house they are having on post for the military families. Don’t ask me any details; that’s all I know. I don’t care though- I get to dress up! Yay! Now the stressful part begins- what to wear. Being that I am still plus size finding a costume that fits is going to be difficult. I may end up getting a men’s costume and I am ok with that. If I was creative I probably could come up with something on my own but I am not so I am off to the costume store tomorrow in hopes I can find something that fits and is appropriate to wear around kids. If you have any costume ideas or suggestions please let me know. It would be great if I could shop tomorrow with an idea of what to look for.

My Sunday Morning

Most Sunday’s mornings I can be found at The Synergy Studio for a Journey Dance class. JD is basically guided free dance and as we dance through our own personal journey we are given ideas or pearls of wisdom to help us along the way. For example, as we are dancing our heart song, focusing on our heart and the emotions we feel, Adelle or Angie will say to us’ “what would your life be like if you followed your heart?” That question always gets me thinking. Another thing we do in class is go through a healing dance bringing out our inner Shaman. Sometimes the movements are different but the ritual is always the same; letting go of what we don’t need, bringing into our heart what we do. Every Sunday I let go of the self-hate, doubt, anger, pity and any other negative emotion I am feeling at the time and then allow into my heart self-love, joy, happiness, respect, and strength to help heal myself and become a better person. This dance is a great way to cleanse your spirit. This Sunday there is no Journey Dance class which breaks my heart. I have grown accustomed to spending 75 minutes every week in a self-reflective dance. Although I will not be at the studio dancing I will still go through the routine on my own and I ask you to join me by taking a few minutes this Sunday morning and bring out your inner Shaman. In whatever manner you feel is fitting, cleanse yourself of negative emotions and in their place allow your body to fill with positive emotions. You can dance, you can create a wiping motion over your body pushing away the negativity, or you can meditate on these thoughts- whatever works for you. Just take a few minutes to yourself and think about what negativity you need to rid yourself of and what positivity you need in your life. I hope you can join me- it is a great way to start the week.

Have a great weekend! Thanks for reading!

October 21, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . Life. 3 comments.

The opposite of thought-provoking

Here are some random thoughts I have had in my head the past few days that I wanted to share. I jotted down (well, texted myself) some notes so I wouldn’t forget 🙂

* The Synergy Studio is offering Journey Dance Module 1: 5-Day Intensive Teacher Training in January. I am going to do it. I have already told Paul that it is what I want for my Christmas/Birthday/Anniversary present (which all happen in the same 2 week span) and he said ok. Originally I wanted an iPad but when I found out that this would be happening here in San Antonio and would be taught by Toni Bergins, the creator of Journey Dance, herself I knew I couldn’t pass it up. Not only will I get to spend five days with some of the most wonderful people learning more about Journey Dance I will also be granted a provisional license upon course completion that will allow me to teach Journey Dance classes. This is a big deal for me because I know it is only a matter of time before we leave San Antonio and more than likely we will end up somewhere that isn’t in or near a city. I may end up relocating to the sticks, to the middle of nowhere, and what will I do when I can’t find someplace like Synergy nearby? If I can’t find a studio that offers Journey Dance classes for me to take maybe I could teach some myself. I could teach at a yoga studio or at the Army post gym or even a YMCA but at least I will be able to still enjoy Journey Dance and possibly even introduce it to others who have never experienced it before. I look at this class as an investment into my future happiness.

Synergy is also offering Nia White Belt training five times next year and if I can afford it (it is three times as expensive as the Journey Dance seminar) then I will do that as well. The white belt allows you to teach too so again I have to think of it as an investment. It would be great if in a few years I could turn doing something I love, something that brings me such happiness, into a part-time career. Although this has nothing to do with teaching I wanted to tell you that I signed up for a yoga seminar that runs for five weeks, two hours every Saturday, starting Saturday 9/3. It is an introduction to yoga class taught by the Synergy yoga instructors and although I have been practicing yoga for months I feel it is important that I expand my knowledge base. I am not sure how strong of a foundation I have when it comes to the basics of different poses and techniques since I kind of just threw myself into yoga. I know I could definitely learn a lot from a course like this. I am very excited to start that next week and will definitely let you know how it goes.

*My IRL BFF JH ( James & Jax) told me that I needed to go to BlogHer12. It will be in NYC next year and because she lives close by she would be attending. I, of course, said yes. Then I asked Paul and thankfully he said yes, too. JH and I have been discussing logistics and planning ever since they announced the location and dates a few weeks ago. Yeah, we’ve been going a little crazy for an event that isn’t happening until August 2-4 2012 but we are both so excited we can’t help ourselves. Then today to add to the BlogHer12 chaos Hilton Hotels (where the conference is being held) put out a discount code, ‘BLOG’ in case you hadn’t heard, which knocked 100 dollars off their rate so we had no choice but to book our room. There was no way I was missing out on the chance to save 300 bucks! Now that the room is booked I just need to buy the actual BlogHer12 tickets. I am going to try and do this in the next week because they are currently offering 20% off the early bird rate through August which brings the price to a very reasonable $158 for the two-day event. While JH and I were texting about the hotel and the tickets this morning I came up with an idea for a new goal. I would like to be at my goal weight by the time I go to BlogHer. That means I need to lose 79 pounds in 11.5 months. It’s a plausible and realistic goal which I am going to work like gangbusters towards meeting it. We are 49 weeks out (exactly) so that means I need to lose 1.61 pounds per week on average to meet that goal. I know it will get harder to lose as much as fast as I get lighter but I think I can get there. Wish me luck!

Are you going to BlogHer? If so, I hope we can meet! I know I am still pretty small-time when it comes to the blogging community but I am still looking forward to spending the weekend with some amazing female bloggers and getting to learn some tricks of the trade. I am not necessarily going there looking to grow my blog, honestly I have no idea how bloggers who get hundreds of comments per post keep up with it, but I would like to improve my writing ability and learn how to create posts that are worthwhile and helpful to others reading. Regardless of the outcome I know it will be the experience of a lifetime and am thankful to get to spend it with my best friend.

*When my Dad was in the hospital after complications following his neck surgery Paul and I ended up going back to NJ to be by his side. Being that neither of us is from Texas we have no family here that could help take care of our dogs while we were gone. We reached out to our former dog walker (from when we lived in the apartment) knowing she would love to spend some time with the girls but sadly she was on her way back home to France because her father had passed away. So we turned to my friend MS- my first SA friend- in hopes that she would be able to take care of them. She kindly agreed to come and stay in our home in order to make sure the dogs were out and fed and taken care of. It was a lot to ask of someone, especially someone who is not a pet owner, and we sprung it on her with one day’s notice. Oh, and did I mention that we had lived there for four days, there were still unpacked boxes everywhere, and no food/drink to be found. Yeah, she was a saint- she never complained once. So, I just wanted to take a minute to give her a long overdue THANK YOU. Paul and I really appreciate you taking care of things while we were gone. You rock! We totally owe you one! Woo, Woo, Woo -Arsenio Hall style!

*Do you remember when Paul fell in the bathtub, hurt his ribs, and then didn’t go to the doctor to have them checked out? Well it happened again. Not the fall but the injured ribs. He was in combatives practice (kind of like wrestling mixed with MMA) and he landed awkwardly after someone threw him. He ended up in the ER the next day because the pain was too much for him to tolerate. They took some x-rays, told him it was a contusion (why they can’t say bruise is beyond me), gave him some pain meds, put him on profile (exercise restrictions) and sent him on his way. That was Sunday. Today he went to the doctor because he was still in tons of pain. The doctor reviewed his previous x-ray and told him he thought there were signs of a fractured rib but that it had healed, probably from the first fall. They sent him for more x-rays and sure enough he actually has a broken rib- not fully healed- more than likely from this recent injury. This sucks for multiple reasons. One, it’s obviously really painful. Two, he is now on a two month profile which will restrict what he can do training wise. It will definitely make it harder for him to continue his marathon training. Three and this may be the worst part- he cannot compete in the Soldier of the Quarter competition next week. Combatives is a part of the competition (why he was training in the first place) and since he cannot participate in that event he is not allowed to compete at all. This is really bad news for Paul because he missed the last one while he was off at training and now he will miss this one, the last one of the year. Poor guy. He can’t seem to catch a break these days.

In other Paul news, he and the other guys that tend to hang out at our house finished the first keg in the kegorator in like three weeks. Geez, that was fast. I think we were all hoping it would last a little longer. Oh, well. What can I say, they like beer. Tonight Paul and one of his friends are going to get another one and just in time since Paul will need a beer or three after the week has been having.

*Starting next Tuesday I will be joining in Weight Watchers program offered where I work. This may not seem like a big deal to most but for me it was a decision I went back and forth on for quite some time. I am nervous about changing my weigh in day to Tuesday (at lunchtime nonetheless) from Saturday mornings. I know what I weigh on Tuesdays and what I weigh on Saturdays and usually I am heavier on Tuesdays. Also, weighing in at lunch time means I will be weighing in wearing my work clothes after having eaten breakfast opposed to my normal routine of weighing in on an empty stomach. But I know it is the best thing to do for me. Doing WW at work means there is a possibility of partial reimbursement from my employer by meeting certain goals, it means Saturday mornings open to do whatever I want, it will help me save of gas money not having to drive out to the meeting location, and possibly creating a bond with some of my co-workers as we work through our journey together. So once I got over my fear of seeing a huge gain on that scale come Tuesday, as well as being reassured that I wouldn’t lose my WW history I had built up for five months, it was an easy decision to make. Plus, it will only be bad that first weigh in and then after that it will be back to business as usual. Keep an eye out for my Weight Watchers updates as they will now be posted on Tuesdays or Wednesdays.

*Do you use Klout? I am somewhat obsessed with it. Not because it is awesome- it really doesn’t do anything but measure your social media influence- but because they give you free stuff. I have yet to receive any of the said free stuff but I am growing obsessed with trying to. My friend JH told me I should join (do you see the pattern yet? She’s turned me on to so many things; blogging, Twitter, BlogHer, Klout, etc.) and so I did. She has Klout and because of it she received a year’s supply of clinical strength deodorant. Not that I am in desperate need of clinical strength deodorant (actually JH gave me some when I saw her a few weeks ago) but I am hoping that anything I receive, that I can’t use myself, I can in-turn donate it to the USO to go into care packages for deployed soldiers. This is now my new goal- trying to get free stuff. I think my friend KG would approve! 🙂 If you want to help me try to get some free stuff via Klout friend me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter- @dacialee33.

Thanks for reading!

August 25, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . Blogging, Life. 10 comments.

Nia Love

I have fallen in love with Nia; a blend of dance, yoga and martial arts, that leaves me feeling both empowered and free afterwards. On days, like today, when I go to Nia after work I find myself excited and filled with anticipation, like a child on the first day of school. Originally I utilized Nia as a way to get my calorie burn up and a good sweat on but it has blossomed into so much more than that. It is such a spiritual experience and I found that it brings me inner peace and self-reflection. Nia connects you to the music and your movement and allows you to create something magical. Prior to joining the Synergy Studio in early June I had never heard of Nia but after some research I found that Nia has been around since 1983, it is nothing new. Joanie, one of my Nia teachers, has just celebrated her 17th year in Nia. She is credited for bringing Nia to San Antonio; she is truly an inspirational woman and I am always honored to be in her presence.

Joanie was also the person who taught Jan, another magnificent Nia instructor at Synergy, eleven years ago. While Joanie was away last week celebrating her 17 year Nia anniversary in MT I had the pleasure of having Jan as my ‘substitute’ Nia instructor for two classes. Although I had only had class with Jan twice before, once at a Nia class she taught and the other was a Journey Dance class we both participated in, I felt connected to her spirit from the first class. She has incredible energy and an amazing personality that shines through in her dance. She was even kind enough to allow me to take her picture (after our class) for this blog.

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This is Jan.

11 years with Nia.

60 years old.

She is amazing.

At the end of class Jan sometimes plays this song. The first time I heard it I asked her the name/artist and immediately went to iTunes to download it. Every time I hear it I cry. This song will forever remind me of Jan and her friendship, no matter where this life takes me. I just wanted to share this with you because it has a beautiful message that we all need to hear and take to heart.

Kinder- Copper Wimmin

If you are interested in learning more about Nia or if you want to find classes in your area you should stop by their website: Nia

Thanks for reading!

August 16, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . Nia, San Antonio. 5 comments.