Summer Health Project Week 1

Sunday, June 13, 2021

May 31 was the day I decided to start a summer health project. I needed new encouragement. I've been with WW for a few years but I am yet to be a lifetime member. 

When I started November 1, 2017, I was weighing 175 lbs. Today my official weight is 147. 

My weight from 2017-2021

During the pandemic, our local WW workshop was closed so we were weighing ourselves at home. I always get a lower number at home then I do in the workshop. I decided to start using the workshop number because it is official and it is the only way to get to lifetime. Back to my current health project. 

The first week of my health project was filled with obstacles. It was camp week for most of our family. I too went camping with my younger kids. Here is what worked:

1. I went to camp with the plan to eat until I was lightly satisfied. I also meant that when I went to the cafeteria and all they had was pizza and fried chicken strips, I was going to eat vegetables. I ate a lot of vegetables y'all but it was worth it. I didn't get sick. I actually felt very healthy the entire time. Eating foods that give me the best energy and eating until I was lightly satisfied were great strategies.
2. I took snacks to camp. I bought different snacks than the kids. I'm so glad I did. I bought these mini chocolate rice cakes that were delicious. I prepacked them so that I'd have the correct amount of points. I also paced myself. I fought the urge to eat all my snacks in one day. One day, I walked 7 miles. That day, I was extra hungry and I needed extra energy so I saved my Clif Bar for that day. I am encouraged that this strategy totally worked. 
3. I tracked. Tracking helped me remain in control of what I was eating. We went to Cici's pizza on the way there and back. I tracked my salad, soup and pizza. I looked at the points before we arrived and I made it work. Cici's is a place I go to every 5 years. It was good to eat for fuel and now that I know I lost weight, I see that tracking works. 
4. I ate replacement meals mostly. I heard there's a difference between a "replacement" meal and a "celebration" meal. My meals at camp were replacing what I'd eat at home. Celebration meals are the ones I save weeklies for. The mindset that I was eating for fuel to for feasting helped me succeed. 

Here were my challenges:

1. I didn't sleep enough. I really missed sleeping the correct amount of hours per night. 
2. Wednesdays are difficult days because I'm super tired. I could have made a better food choice but I tracked and decided to wait until today to eat again. Tracking wins yet again. 
3. I experienced a little stress. The amount of stress I experience had decreased quite a bit. I'm very grateful.

This week at WW, the topic is about setting proper goals. I'm really enjoying what I am learning. The upcoming week does not include travel but we do have a big family celebration. My plan is to save points to enjoy that day. I also plan on prepping my food ahead of time. I always succeed when I prep my food. 

Here are the project stats*:

June 3 - 150. 2
June 10 - 147.6 

*I'm using the WW workshop weight instead of the one I see at home.

Thanks for joining me on this journey! Oh, part 1 of the project will officially be over July 9. I'll pick it back up when I return from summer travel. My goal is to arrive at 136 lbs.

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Sunday Seven

  1. I took the time and read my journal since I moved to my new town. I’m glad to be on this side of the move. Transitioning to a new place is not easy. It takes courage to take root and live the life you want to live. There is grace for those adapting to life in a new hometown. There are also better days ahead. 

  2. East Texas has been a growth environment. How do I know? I am often out of my comfort zone. Failure is not my enemy. Growth is modeled and expected in my close relationships. It’s not easy but so good for me.

  3. “Gratitude is thanking God after He does it. Faith is thanking God before He does it.” I am thinking deeply about what gratitude is. I loved this quote by Mark Batterson. It reminds me to hold gratitude and faith together as I pray. 

  4. New paths lead to new views. I’m amazed at how many times I wanted to change but I refused to take a new path there. 

  5. Yesterday the kids had a summer swim competition. Competing with peers as well as older and younger kids has been a source of joy and encouragement to work harder. Swimming is such a joy to me. I’m glad our kids are also enjoying it. 

  6. The heat has officially arrived in Texas. This past week, I said so long for cooler temps for a while. I try to take my hydration seriously but I pay extra special attention in the summer. I use Nuun to replace my electrolytes. Going into workouts hydrated is ideal.

  7. I’m fully accountable for my life and no one else’s. This has been a difficult thing to face. It doesn’t mean I don’t care. It does mean I can only be fully responsible for myself and others are responsible for their self-will. Others get to make their own decisions and they also get to answer to God for the life they decided to live. 

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Summer Health Project

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

 Today I tell you all about my Summer Health Project. Check it out: 

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Let's talk about Stress

Today, I want to talk about stress in a real, tangible and encouraging way. Please enjoy this episode.

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Sunday Seven

Saturday, May 29, 2021

1. Unplugging is so necessary. My family and I had the honor and blessing of unplugging for a bit. I find that unplugging helps me recover, reconnect and get much-needed refreshment. Recover from the arduous pace of life. I'm grateful for the life I live but honestly, it is arduous. Reconnect with family is so precious. The new memories we make are priceless. Refreshment is something I need but I don't realize how much until I unplug. I'm grateful to God and the friends who made this all possible. 

2. One of my WW coaches reminded me to reflect on the past year. When I look at numbers themselves, I'm 4 pounds lighter than last summer. When I look at the entirety of my lifestyle, I can see that I grew so much. The one thing that helped the most was a healthier mindset about tracking. Without insisting in changing my mindset, I don't think I would be in this healthy place. 

3. These days, I am grateful for my friends. I decided to embrace the close friendships I am developing in East Texas. My friends are part of my life and vice-versa. My friends are there for me when I need them and vice-versa. My friends are easy to love. Easy to get to know and easy to support. I am so blessed to be surrounded by a great group of friends. My friends make time for me. Whether we grab coffee, talk while the kids play, or sit down for lunch, we keep in touch and we know exactly what's happening. Who can ask for anything more?

4. The theme of these past 3 months has been "you are stronger than you think." I embraced this mindset when I joined CrossFit. In my personal life, I've relied on God's strength to plunge into Godly renewal. Gaining strength is not easy or convenient but needed for quality of life and longevity. I can't tell you how many times I had to change my mindset to get through a tough workout. It clearly can make me stronger. I just need to bring the correct mindset, technique, and a joyful disposition. Such is life. No one is exempt from difficulties. We need to face our problems with a Godly mindset, technique, and disposition. 

5. My husband has been teaching me a lot about perspective. Zeke is a great teacher. Recently, he reminded me to look at our kids' perspectives during a recent challenge. They kept their cool. They were calm and they were joyful. The clear image inspired me to be more like a child when it comes to my Heavenly Father. He's a very present help. All I need to do is to have the right perspective. 

6. Zeke and I have been married for almost 15 and a half years. I remember looking at people who were married for 3 years when I was a newlywed. I was in awe of so many years. I'm amazed at how quickly time goes by and what we decided to do during these years. Zeke's love for me can't be measured in the years because it feels infinite. I'm deeply grateful for the righteous way he leads our family. I'm amazed that God would love me so much He'd give me His very best in and through Zeke. I pray that I can honor, respect, and uplift Zeke every day from words to thoughts to deeds. 

7. A question I have been asking my kids is: how will you solve a problem in the world? A few of them have been thinking about it. I want to plant a seed of possibilities. I know God will bring growth and fruition to what we plant as parents. As I ask them, I am accountable for the same question. How am I solving a problem in the world? 

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Ducks in a roll

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

I'm not sure why I think that the idea of having my ducks in a roll work for me. It makes sense. It means organizing tasks and scheduling them so that I am ready for the next step.

The problem is life. Life has a way of distracting the ducks so they do not stay in a roll. 

Take kids for example. I remember getting them into a routine. The moment I thought, "I got this" my little ones changed. 

Talking about routine, I feel the same thing about my home. I have and enjoy my routines but things happen. Recently, I had quite a few events happening at my home and I had to be flexible because my routine the week before was different. The events still happened and my attitude adjustment gave me sanity.

I can't relate to the idea of having ducks perfectly in a roll at all times because life is not that predictable. Also, let's be honest and let's observe that ducks do before and after they get on a roll. They roam, eat, poop, scream, and even sleep. People only notice them when they are in a roll. 

I think this is a more realistic way to live. Do what you need to do, when you need to do it with purpose. 

The goal is not to be robotic and synchronized. The goal is to find purpose for the tasks at hand. Let me get less theoretical and more practical.

It is almost summertime and the kids are out of school. Our school year schedule is completely gone. While I am grateful I no longer have a tight morning schedule, I miss the predictability it gave me. 

My goal is to find the purpose for the summer. When I have that purpose in mind, creating a summer schedule makes more sense. Our summer schedule is not rigid. We do think about with the purpose in mind but we allow ourselves to enjoy the season for the flexibility it brings.

I will enjoy my free-er mornings. I will enjoy the extra time to prep dinners. I will enjoy teaching and learning new skills. It won't look perfect but it will be purposeful.

How do you feel about the idea of having your ducks on a roll? How does that work during the summer?
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Time management chart for kids

Monday, May 24, 2021

Time is unforgivable. Time is no respecter of persons. It goes by even during a pandemic. What we do with the time we have is completely up to us. 

In a June 2020 survey*, 
62 percent of parents to U.S. teens aged 14 to 17 years stated that their kids were spending more than four hours per day on electronic devices since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Overall, the pandemic triggered a rise in the use of electronic devices among American children under 13 and teenagers with screentime now double that of what it used to be across all age groups.

I believe that we all took liberties in 2020 with our time. We allowed our kids to do the same. In 2021, I am trying to push forward from all the pandemic brought. How do I do? I focus on the only time guaranteed: 24 hours.

For the past few summers, I teach my kids about time management. The teacher learns twice, which is great for me. 

This time, we started with an overview of Bible study. Starting anything focusing on God is important. He created time. He is the Master of time. He can give us wisdom in time management. 

I make a pie chart which represents some of the ways we spend our time. We start with sleep. Without proper sleep, nothing else in the chart works well. We continued with other things we do such as eat, swim, music, Portuguese lessons, etc. 

The good thing about making a chart is that you can notice what's not there. In our case, devotional (ops!). We quickly included it. We eat a lot of rice and black beans so we used the beans to represent 24 hours. Each child filled the different time slots. I asked them, what's missing from the chart? Technology right?

We talked about unwise ways to use technology. Some people use it by not sleeping enough. Others, but not doing other things essential to optimal living. I then asked the kids if they knew how to use technology wisely. The littlest said we can limit the time to 1 hour. The other kids said we can combine it with something we are doing already such as listen to music while walking outdoors. 

We all felt encouraged about our time usage plan. I told the kids that time management they would use for the rest of their lives. I also told them it was important to look at the goal behind the way we were dividing our time. 

We want to be good stewards of the life God is graciously giving us. 

How are you and your family using your time these days?


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