Friday, February 7, 2014

Ladies' Home Journal and The Doctors (finally, the BIG NEWS!!)

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I'm so excited. Not only for the experience, but to finally be able to share it with YOU!

The big news and what Big Day #1 and Big Day #2, It's a Wrap! were all about is...

Ladies' Home Journal magazine included me in a feature article about maintaining weight loss! Myself, Roni Noone from Roni's Weigh and Erika Kendall from A Black Girls' Guide to Weight Loss are in the March edition of Ladies' Home Journal, about to hit store shelves any day now!

Ack! Can you stand it?! I can barely stand it. It's so surreal. I can't wait to get my hands on the actual magazine. It hits newsstands Tuesday and I'll be there to buy a copy (or thirty).

The three of us had so much fun at the photo shoot, and I think it shows. As you can imagine, we had a lot in common. I was so inspired and impressed by my two fellow bloggers, what an honor to be in this group!

When I walked into the photography studio and saw that giant poster of myself I couldn't help but cry. I felt the full weight of the transformation. A changed body, but more important, a changed me. But also the same me. I've always been a bit stubborn, or, let's call it determined. I've always been able to laugh in adversity, pick myself after a fall and, when all wrapped up in the messy details, step back and see the big picture. Those traits and more have been invaluable on this journey. I'm not a flashy before and after picture, I'm a real person just like you, who simply chose - and continues to choose - to never give up.

I think it's important to point out that I'm normal. I wrote about this in my Santa Cruz Triathlon race report. The fit, trim, (mostly) healthy-eating person I am now is not the person that started this journey. I said it best in that post so I'll just quote myself here.
Sometimes I meet people who say, "Oh wow, Michelle, I could never do what you've done, you're amazing! Look at you, you're so strong and fit, great job." They think the me they see now is the me that did this. And they think they're not like me. But this isn't the me that did this. The Michelle you see in front of you is not the woman that got me off the couch. Fat Michelle did that. Fat Michelle picked me up and carried me along the first difficult steps of this journey. And I thought of that phrase, on the shoulders of giants. Fat Michelle was my giant, my hero that picked me up before I was me. That brought me here. And I almost started crying. Any twinge of embarrassment or wincing that I ever felt when I saw my "before" pictures is entirely out of line. That is the woman that started this journey, not the me you see now.
And that is the feeling that caused me to burst into tears when I saw the poster.

Like I said. Oh. My. God. How could I not cry?

But now...let's have more fun!

We did group shots but we also did individual shots. Here are a few of my favorites.


 Want to read the article? It's available online now!

Please stop by, give it a "like" and if you love it, please share it. Ladies' Home Journal will see that you want stories about maintenance and about real women. Of course, they're already focused on real women, one of their hashtags is #womeninspiringwomen. I love it.

They also did a short video of us sharing our favorite tips.

Click here to watch the video.
But wait...that's not all!

Do you know that hunky guy? He's Travis Stork, from The Doctors. We're going to be on TV! The show will air on Monday, February 10th. It's a syndicated show so you'll have to check your local listing for times. I was SO nervous during the filming I couldn't stop wondering if the audience could see my knees shaking! The whole segment was just over five minutes so at least it went fast. I can't wait to see it. Cannot. Wait.

I want to once again thank the amazing women of Ladies' Home Journal who were involved in putting this together. It was an experience of a lifetime.

Susan, Moi, and Julie

That's Susan Pocharski on my right, the woman who dreamed up the article. She's the one who chose us, who sent me this email back in July of last year, and got the whole ball rolling (and written!).
Hi, I am an editor at Ladies' Home Journal and am a big fan of your blog. I'd like to talk with you about a feature story we are working on in hopes you may want to be a part of it. - Many thanks, Susan Pocharski
Many thanks to YOU Susan! Thank you for being interested in this story, for writing it, for being such an amazing support during our time in Los Angeles, for bringing out the best in us. Thank you!

Next to Susan is Julie Bain, one of the health editors at Ladies' Home Journal. Another fun, energized, supportive woman. She co-hosted our segment on The Doctors with Travis. Having her on-set helped me feel a bit more comfortable. Thanks for everything Julie!

Finally, I want to thank Clare Lissaman, the director of photography. Ironically I didn't get a picture with her but she was right there too, making sure we were shining our brightest. Thank you Clare!

Well, that's a wrap! I'll be on my couch at 3pm on Monday watching myself on TV, at the store waiting for it to open on Tuesday so I can buy my March copy of Ladies' Home Journal with Amy Poehler on the cover (love her!) and sharing everything with you until you can't stand it. Thank you for sharing in the excitement of this experience with me. It wouldn't be the same if I didn't have such cool readers to share this with. I'm off to cry now. Tears of joy, people, tears of joy.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

A Quick Hello

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So much going on but tonight is not the night to be blogging about it, I have to get some sleep! Tonight will be just a quick recap of my fitness and food.

I was at an all-day training at work today. I packed healthy snacks and started out right eating them. But as the day progressed, my eating choices tanked. I had a yogurt parfait with granola and fruit after my snack of an apple and a cheese stick. Then I bought, and proceeded to eat throughout the day, a large bag of trail mix, the kind with candy mixed in. Lunch was one fried chicken thigh. After all that trail mix I wasn't that hungry.

After work I went to the gym. For the first time in a few days I had time to do my full workout. I ran on the treadmill for 3 miles, even upping it to 7.0mph for a few minutes. I'm working to get back to my previous pace. It's getting there. I had to push myself for that last mile. I've never claimed this was easy. Well, sometimes, but not today.

After the treadmill I did chest/triceps/core. I'm feeling really good about my core strength. It's also getting back to what it was. Not quite, but close. I wrapped up feeling strong, which is always good.

Dinner was a 6" subway sandwich - chicken breast, no cheese, veggies and vinegar and mustard. It was plenty after the almost-pound of trail mix was probably still in my stomach.

That's it. I've gotta hit the sack. Exciting stuff to come soon!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

No Shoes? No Problem.

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This post is coming to you from drowsy-land, where I currently find myself. I'd tell you this post will be short but whenever I say that, I tend to ramble. Before I forget, I took a picture of my post-run meal on Sunday and forgot to post it! That can't happen.

TJ's vegetarian chili and a fruit salad
After the rain soaked run the chili hit the spot. It sent me into a state of wanting to take a nap though, that was the only downside. Of course I didn't nap, though that would have been lovely.

Ok, on to the now. My workout schedule this week started with a bit of a thud when I couldn't exercise yesterday. I didn't feel up to it and something had to give. That means if I want to hit my goal of exercising four days during this week (plus a weekend outing), I will be exercising four days in a row, something I generally try to avoid. We'll just have to see how this plays out.

Today started out good. And then I had lunch, a vegan "power bar" at a local coffee shop where I was having tea with a client. It tasted like it was mostly peanut butter and was about the size of a brownie, but MUCH denser. It actually filled me up just fine despite its small size. Must have been packed with protein. But let me tell you, I got SO tired about 30 minutes later. It was tough keeping my eyes open the rest of the afternoon.

Then, as the day dragged on, work backed up such that I had to work late. By the time I got out of there I had about 50 minutes at the gym, which meant more like 40 to actually exercise. I got there and was hustling to change clothes when I shoes. I forgot my tennis shoes. Grrr. This hasn't happened in ages. When I pack my gym bag I always tell myself, six things, I must have six things...
  1. shirt
  2. shorts/tights
  3. sports bra
  4. socks
  5. headband
  6. SHOES
Guess I didn't do the counting thing this time. I actually keep an extra sports bra in a baggie in my gym bag in case I ever forget mine. But of course, no extra shoes. And obviously I didn't have time to go and get them. At first I thought that meant I had to bag my workout but then I took a look at the shoes I wore to work.

They are made by Birkenstock but are more like regular shoes just built around the Birkenstock footbed. I've had them forever and still really like them. Since today was a bike day I didn't actually need tennis shoes. And weight lifting didn't require them so why not? Here I am all dressed to workout but with my work shoes still on.

I know you can hardly see the shoes...

They're black and leather and flat so I don't think anyone even noticed I was wearing street shoes. They actually worked fine and I was happy with my stroke of luck that I didn't have heels or knee-high boots on today. That would not have worked. So I rode the upright bike on a hard level for 15 minutes and then did back/biceps/core. I got through most of my workout, only had to drop a few sets of core stuff to get out on time. I exercised for a total of 41 minutes and burned something like 280 calories. I'll take it.

I was glad the shoes didn't stop me because I needed my workout today. Two days in a row with no exercise would have made me grumpy. I should say grumpiER because I was plenty grumpy tonight. I don't know why, just not in the mood for any of it. I came home and made dinner. Thankfully, or maybe intuitively, the kids ate it without complaint. It was a pasta dish with tomatoes and I thought they might balk. Only one peep out of Myra and I told her what was what and she ate dinner happily.

After dinner I had a bit of housework to do and then we finally got some time for Legos on the kitchen floor. Next time I might save the housework until after they're in bed. I just don't feel like I'm seeing them enough. After they were in bed I did some meditative sweeping and laundry folding, which actually relaxed me some. I wonder if I'm PMSing? On that happy note, I'm off to bed. I have to get up extra early tomorrow to be in the city for an all-day training. 5:30am is going to come awfully early :/

Monday, February 3, 2014

Here's a Tip - Don't Eat Paper

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Have you seen the Dannon commercial where the woman eats paper? It's so awful. She's sitting at her desk, apparently starving herself to keep thin, and draws a picture of a cupcake or muffin or something, and then starts ripping up the paper and eating it. I was shocked when I saw it. So many things wrong with that commercial not the least of which is practically paying homage to eating disorders. But nowadays they are probably glad to have stirred up some controversy. No such thing as bad attention, right?

Moving on to something MUCH more fun...remember my trip to Los Angeles last year? In just a few days I'll be able to tell you ALL about it! Yay! I'm super excited.

In case you forgot, here I am on the trip with Roni Noone. We had such a great time and I'm finally going to get to share the whole scoop. Thursday I get all the links and will be sharing them like a madwoman I'm sure :)

Ok, I'm done teasing. Now on to food (and alcohol). I had dinner with friends on Saturday night and we celebrated a couple birthdays. The meal was great and I ate more than I needed but still had a hearty slice of dense, yummy, creamy chocolate marble cake. Over the course of the evening I had two glasses of champagne and a glass or two of wine. I was quite full when I went to bed.

The next day I was thinking about the alcohol. I'm not sure I really needed it. Well, of course I didn't need it but, I guess what I'm saying is, I'm not sure it actually enhanced my experience of the evening. That's why I drink, to have a more enjoyable time. I do enjoy the taste too but would I be drinking if it didn't have alcohol in it? No. If it didn't increase my fun or relaxation or any of it then why do it? Next time we're together I might just forgo the alcohol and see how I feel.

Sunday I lounged around all morning before finally getting off my tush around midday to go for a run. I'd signed up for a bike ride but it was a "rain cancels" event and it was raining, sooo, no ride. It was all up to me to motivate myself out the door. Into the rain. And the cold. But of course, I did it. I put on my cold running tights, a long-sleeved tech top with a microfleece lining, and a running jacket. Oh, and gloves and a headband that covered my ears.

I hit the road with a plan to run six miles, my go-to weekend distance these days. But around mile 2 I was feeling really good so I started to consider going for eight miles instead. Why not seven, I don't know. In any case, I had my Garmin on so I could just meander around until I hit four miles and then retrace my steps. I was closing in on mile 3 when I had to go up a small hill. It also started to rain and the wind picked up. Pounding rain and wind has a way of making me feel like I am not screwing around with this whole fitness thing, "look at me, I'm out here running in the cold and rain, I AM SERIOUS!" Still, I wasn't sure about going another mile and then returning over that hill on my way back but my stubborn streak kicked in and I just had to do it.

Full Garmin stats here

Since my little comeback from pneumonia and whatnot I've been running strictly by feel. I try not to glance at my Garmin too often and focus on what feels really easy in the beginning, and then pick it up as I feel the desire to push.

The last mile was tough. The last 1/8th of a mile nearly killed me. I ran past a bus stop and someone waiting for the bus said "hi" as I was passing. I have no idea if it was a man, woman, alien or animal and all I could do was sort of gasp/grunt in return. Normally I'm a friendly runner but at that moment I didn't have the energy to even look at the person, let alone speak. Hey Kristi, that fastest/last mile was for you sister!

After the run I felt wiped out. And had to have lunch, including another piece of birthday cake to re-energize. My eating has been a bit all-over-the-place lately but the good news is, I'm not being critical of myself or worrying too much about it. I know how this works. Keep doing what I'm doing, that's what works. In time, if I do that, all will fall into place. Right? Right. Er, at least I hope that's right. Ok, I've been doing this for...wait. a. blogiversary is coming up!! I started WW on/around 2/7/07 and started the blog on 3/25/07, so it's going to be seven years here shortly. So yes, I should know a thing or two by now. At least one would hope.

Ok, the only other thing happening around here is we're starting to plan for Marek's 5th birthday. Five already?! I know, it's crazy. We meandered around on party ideas but landed on a Legos party at home. I could NOT be more excited. I love Legos possibly more than any other toy. I had one of those giant blankets filled with them when I was a kid and loved nothing more than sitting on the floor for hours. Passing on a love for the little plastic bricks brings my heart so much joy. I sat on the kitchen floor for a solid hour tonight building with both Marek and Myra.

I kept saying, "it's almost bedtime guys" and then not moving. I was busy building! They are learning the trick to staying up late, play quietly together and I will not move a muscle toward putting you to bed. When I did finally call it quits they went easily, I think the building put them in a calm mood for sleeping. I love it.

Ok, that's it from me, night all.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

You, Dear Readers, Are Awesome!

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About 1.5 weeks ago I wrote a post called Are my days numbered?, in which I speculated that the food challenge I was doing was perhaps a bad idea. I received some great comments. Very thoughtful, helpful, and honest comments. About five days after that post I quietly stopped counting the days of the challenge. It was a compromise for myself wherein I accepted the challenge wasn't really my thing while not making a big, "I quit" pronouncement.

I wanted to respond to each comment but instead of doing it in the comment section I wanted to do it here so you enjoy the comments right along with me.
  1. Anonymous 
    I think you are answering your own question, which is the purpose of a little 4-week experiment. There is the attraction of a miracle cure, a quick fix, a new insight that you've previously overlooked...however, the rational mind starts to question: "can I really do this forever?" What is the point of severely restricting food groups based on what - someone's enthusiasm? The amount of contradictory advice is astounding. In the end, and for me, it comes down to: sensible but consistent good nutrition, reasonable portion sizes, and rejection of ongoing tolerance of "oops" of candy, junk food and binge eating. Michelle - it's not sexy, but go back to what brought you success over the long haul - a commitment to watching your food intake and working in exercise as a priority. Don't mess with the formula that has brought you success so far!

    My reply: Yes, exactly. The only thing I struggle with in what you said is, "rejection of ongoing tolerance of "oops" of candy, junk food and binge eating." I honestly struggle with this one. Should I make it a goal to never binge, as some other bloggers I admire do? Or should I continue to try and roll with the punches, getting up each time I get knocked down. I think I'm scared to make reject the "oops" because I'm afraid I'll never be able to eliminate them altogether. Anyway, I love what you said about go back to what works. This is exactly what I decided to do in the end. And you know what, I think there is something sexy about it ;)
    Thanks for the thoughtful comment.

  2. I have recent experience with an elimination diet, and I think it was only useful as a tool as a SHORT-TERM detox from my prior high-sugar, high-fat diet, identify the effects of certain foods on my system (I have an issue with some emulsifiers, sugar alcohols, and leafy greens - who knew?), and to completely relearn how to eat in a healthy way.

    It wasn't a liquid diet for 10 days, it wasn't gluten free for a month; it was a structured stage-based program designed by a team of researchers and overseen by my nutritionist who I connected with multiple times per week and made changes according to my particular needs. Week 1 was mostly protein - shakes and chicken with berries, etc. It sucked, and they told me it would. But it was only 7 days and they explained exactly what the purpose was. Then they re-introduced non-starchy veggies. Then they introduced low-glycemic fruits, then beans and legumes, then whole grains and starchy veggies, then all fruits... each was a step towards a balanced regular (though low calorie, for the desired weight loss component) diet.

    For me, restriction for restriction's sake just doesn't make sense. Restriction just to "see if I can do it" is an unnecessary exercise. But as a structured learning experience? Sure, I can tolerate that. And it has been enlightening and, shockingly, my tastes HAVE changed. I used to have the taste buds of an 8-yr-old kid raised on sugar, and now I'm drinking tea with no sweeteners. And enjoying whole foods with alarming regularity. But in most of these restrictive fad diets, they're promised as a quick fix detoxification and reset, with no expectation of long-term habit changes. And is that worth it? I don't think so. But that's just my opinion.

    Michelle, I think you've been so inspiring, and I think a lot of your success is founded in your commitment to your extra-curricular physical activity (you inspired me to buy a bike!!), so all I can say to you is: I think the best thing you can do for yourself is just to keep tracking what you eat. Tracking really is half the battle. Honor yourself by being honest with your tracking and the reality of what you're eating when and why will set you off on making whatever changes should be made. Whoops my battery's dying!! Thanks for reading!!

    My reply: Julie, the elimination thing makes so much sense. Doing these things without a purpose, and, more importantly, without a transition idea for after the change is over is a setup. My sweetness gauge really changed too when I went off processed sweets. Suddenly a bit of maple syrup was all the sweetness I needed. I feel like I learned from the journey and was happy to realize I didn't need to continue it beyond those lessons. Thank you for the encouragement.

  3. Well I say A Big fat yes to the last question :) however you gotta do what you feel is best for you. You learned from your challenge and found it helpful in ways....yes? so in its own way it was a success for you. Is it still helpful in anyway or is it in itself causing a little bit of stress? If you find yourself stre3ssing over it....kick it to the curb and find a new challenge!

    My reply: Yep, I did learn from it but then my heart wasn't in it anymore. So I did kick it to the curb, but no new challenge either. I think my next thing will be the Across the Bay 12k in March.

  4. M
    Move on. I think you figured out exactly what works. Keep it up.

    My reply: Thanks M!

  5. It sounds like you've accomplished your goals with this process. What would continuing to count the days do to support your goals/mission/focus?

    My reply: Exactly why I stopped. Not needing coffee or much alcohol...who knew?

  6. Thank you for sharing this! I just gave myself permission last night to throw in the towel on my own 30-day challenge to track all of my calories. Much like you, I was just hoping to learn from observation and maybe make some positive changes. It seemed like a good way to kick off the new year. But you know what? It was driving me insane and getting me nowhere! I found myself way too preoccupied with what I was eating, when I was eating next, and it felt like a diet. Of course I didn't wake up this morning magically 5 pounds lighter, but I did feel a lot more free. Food for thought. :) 

    My reply: "It felt like a diet," is never good. Consciously making the decision to quit a challenge is better than burning out on it, getting resentful, and then getting entirely off track.

  7. I commented on your last post before I read this one. But honestly I think we all go through these phases. We get lost, skip the exercise and our eating goes a little haywire and so we do these things to refocus ourselves. I think it's a normal pattern that we repeat every now and again just to keep ourselves in check. But I think you have to do what's best for you and listen to your body! And I definitely wouldn't call it a diet, 'challenge' is a much more positive term for what you are doing :D

    My reply: Totally agree. You make a good point, it's probably better to see this as a natural pattern that happens rather than as a "slump." I've taken to calling it "a period of low motivation." I like how it sounds less negative, with less judgement attached I guess.

  8. Stop counting the days. It helped you be more mindful of what you are putting in your body so that was helped refocus you on your eating habits (really I'm sure most of us could use a bit of that after the holidays). ;)

    My reply: Done :)

  9. i agree, stop counting the days. you achieved goal #1 of experimenting with gluten and hooray you don't have an intolerance to it! and you've gotten your eating back on track the way you like it to be. maybe continue tracking what you eat for another week, but yes, stop counting the days. i'd call this experiment a success and done.

    My reply: A big success! I should do a wrap-up post to go over what I learned.

  10. During December I went gluten free and grain free for the first 2 weeks and then gluten free for the rest of the month. I also eliminated all refined grains and almost all added sugar.

    I learned a lot from it. I found out that I wasn't sensitive gluten and that was useful to know. I found out that when I do those things I eat a lot less calories. I got out of the habit of eating some junky snacks. And, when I added back in grains I didn't add those junky snacks back to the grocery cart. So, it was a useful exercise and it helped me break some bad habits.

    My reply: Good job! That's one of things I liked the best, breaking the junky snacks habit. I know it's not solved forever but I needed a kick in the pants.
  11. Anonymous
    As a fellow Weight Watcher at goal for almost 3 years (having lost 93 lbs) and still following the WW program like you did to get to goal, I do wonder why you're doing this diet. Yes, I call it a diet because it eliminates so many things from your diet. It's restrictive. And to me eliminating whole food groups and having a list of restrictions is a diet. Portion control of what else is left is what could cause weight loss (or gain). And if you're like me, if I'm told there are things I can't have? Well then I just want it all that much more and well, failure! I personally think, since you asked :), that you're restricting yourself too much. And that caused your derailment from your plan with your burger. Moderation and being "allowed" to have anything you want is what's so great about WW. Anything as long as you track it or count the points for it. I don't see how you can go wrong with that. Have you thought of going back to tracking to help you change what you call "bad habits"? Another idea is to do the WW Simply Filing technique. As you may know, it's eating all powers foods and you only track what isn't a power food. Maybe focusing in on eating only/mostly power foods will help you eliminate your "bad habits"? Just my thoughts. I love reading about how you think about what you're eating and why. It's really helped me too. And this journey at goal is to something we can just "do". It requires planning and thought. And that's what you're doing. I just personally think you're making it harder on yourself with this "diet". - Kelly H

    My reply: First off, amazing job losing and keeping off 93 pounds! I completely agree about all things in moderation. I was curious about the gluten free thing, and I've enjoyed being off caffeine. I'm also learning that alcohol just isn't that important to me. Not that I was a big drinker before but there were certain situations where I felt compelled to drink. But I didn't miss it in some of those situations, which was a good bit of info. Thanks for the support Kelly, I'm glad you get something from my blog :)

  12. Thanks for the shout out! I have been so inspired by you that I'm grateful to have returned the favor in some small way.

    In terms of your challenge, I think "experiment" is a good thing to call it. You're not looking for it to be a lifestyle change. You're learning that maybe it doesn't align much with your true goals. And yet maybe you will have a couple nuggets of wisdom from it in the end. I think it's also great you haven't been rigid with yourself about following it, you've kept it real and keep moving forward.

    My reply: Good point, I started modifying it almost from the start. I like the message that if you're going to follow some time-based challenge or even, heaven forbid, a "diet", that it's better to modify and continue to follow what works than to toss it altogether. Don't have to be black and white about it. In fact, it's better to learn flexibility, which is what real-life weight maintenance is about.

  13. Michelle, what the hell are you doing? There, I said! haha
    Anyway, diets don't work. The end.

    My reply: You are right. The end. :)

  14. Customizing my food template was the key to my 40 year weight yo-yo ing, emotional eating and long term weight maintenance. I learned the most on 2 elimination diets ( one in Jan 2013 and one in May 2013). Two months to solve a 40 year struggle. Very short time.

    Good luck and the answers will reveal. There is no one way, but finding what works is pure gold. Safe travels. 

    My reply: That's a message we don't spread enough, "there is no one way." I find that someone finds their way and then goes into the world trying to convince everyone that it is the way. People are so different it just stands to reason our way of successfully losing and maintaining weight loss would look different for all of us. 

  15. I gotta admit that I was a little concerned when I read you started up this "challenge". I only recently found your blog, I think the same time I started Weight Watchers on new years day. I'm really inspired by your story, I've got about 80 pounds to lose and so far in 3 weeks I've done great. I previously failed an attempt with another program strictly counting calories eaten and calories burned with exercise but it really got me no-where. I lost that quick 15 and got discouraged with the loss slowed and I gained it all back. Weight Watchers is awesome because it doesn't require me to track stupid things like calories or focus on a specific diet or any set of rules. Just do what I gotta do and slowly embrace a healthier life style. I for one super love grains, pasta, and carby things. No matter how "good" for me it'd be to give up these things, I never will, because that's not me. I don't think that doing some crazy restrictive diet is you. It was a fun experiment, but don't beat yourself up for not being the poster child of this program. Time to move on and find some other cool thing to do! :) Thanks for being awesome, Michelle!

    My reply: Thank you Jacquelyn. I love that with WW you can follow whichever program, no program, change programs, etc and still use WW. You are right, crazy restrictive is just not me, definitely not the poster child. Moved on, that's what I did. Thanks again for the support.

Well, there you have it. Aren't you all brilliant? I really enjoyed all the thoughtful comments and feedback and wanted to share it so everyone could maybe get something from it.

I'll have to catch up with all my eating and exercise antics in my next post, where I hope to be telling you all about my awesome run today. Ok, Michelle, time to get off the couch!