Friday, December 16, 2016

This weeks random thoughts... not really random.. Surprise thickener!

Hi there everyone.  HOPE everyone is busy this Christmas season.  This really is my favorite time of year.  For many reasons.  Just because. 

I am not going to keep you long.  I have an announcement.  I have always been crafty and now I really am taking the plunge.  Right now I am focused on learning to use my Silhouette Cameo 3 and I have many samples coming soon.  My etsy store will be open after the first of the year and I am working on some final designs for Spring vendor shows.

My Weight update is good:  My dietbet ends on 12/23/2016 and as long as I stay focused, I will make it.  NO, I really have to work my heiny off double time.  I still am healing and have not had much physical activity.  Refuse to accept that as an excuse.  Must keep pushing forward!  The game tells me that I am 88% of the way to the goal.  I am focusing on this.  Too close to not give it my best effort.

Week 1-Starting Weight- 298.9 lbs. 
Week 2-289.9 lbs. 
Week 3 288.4
Week 4-286.9 lbs. Goal Weight by 12/23
For the most part, we have had a soup of some sort everyday for lunch. (My work chicas rock!)  I try to prepare as much as I can with no cans.  This helps control sodium and is just better overall.  Broth soups are always better.  BUT... we were not full later that afternoon.  Thickeners add unwanted calories and fat content.  
I know from home cooking that when I cook pinto beans, I like a gravy on them. I accomplish this by mashing up about 1c. of the beans until they are mashed finer then mashed potatoes.  I then add those mashed beans back to the pot and let it simmer.  This "thickens" the water into a sauce.  Since beans add fiber and protein I decided to try this in my soups.  I started with a Chicken Veggie.  The broth is generally a clear one. 
As I researched my bean options; I wanted something that would not "alter" the color of the soup.  I decided on White Kidney Beans.  White Kidney Bean extract has been featured on shows like Dr. Oz and implications for metabolic health as well as being a carb (simple) blocker have been touted.  Even tho this may or may not be the cause I know that beans are good for us and that using beans instead of pill would be most beneficial.  Well the results are delicious.  I have since added this thickener to my low calorie taco soup, and my copy cat Pasta y Fagioli.  I don't know if it really blocks carbs; I do know that we all feel fuller longer.  Satiety will keep us from grazing or over eating.  Its a Win in our books.  I'll let you know what other soups I try this in and if I get the same result with other beans. 


Tuesday, December 6, 2016

SO you need to make the POO...NOT for those with SQUEAMISH tummies..... But everyone really should read this.

Today I want to talk about Probiotics.  For the sake of making sure everyone knows what I am referring too, here is a simple definition: Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are good for your health, especially your digestive system. We usually think of bacteria as something that causes diseases. But your body is full of bacteria, both good and bad. Probiotics are often called "good" or "helpful" bacteria because they help keep your gut healthy.

Before approaching this topic, I had to listen to a portion from Bill Cosby HIMSELF.  You might find this dialogue useful because it is still as funny as when I first heard it!

Maybe, it is unclear of how Probiotics help.  Here is where it gets squeamish.  They aid in digestion.  This means... Yup; you’re going to make the POO.  Why is it as adults we have made the topic of POO such a taboo?  We ran around with our children when they were babies sharing the POO with everyone!  Obviously we understand the importance of POO in our lives. 

Well, if you need to lose weight or want to lose weight... YOU need to POO.  No POO would mean you are holding on to everything you eat! NO better way to slow down your metabolism then not make the POO.  But my problem was so much deeper than that!  As a Gastric-Bypass patient, I will simply state that I struggled with constipation for YEARS!  I would argue with several doctors because I would try to tell them, and was told that hey every other day is good.  I tried everything.  I was in a DETOX cycle from Hell and it no longer helped.  In October of last year, I ended up seeing a specialist for my BUM due to what had been misdiagnosed as hemorrhoids.   Well what actually had occurred was a FISSURE.  Just to simplify this is where some of your most sensitive skin has suffered an actual rip or tear.  This was complicated because it was actually located on a nerve ending and I could barely stand it!  Dr. was very informative and wanted me to try to heal naturally.  He prescribed Miralax to keep things soft and flowing.

 Miralax worked for a bit; then gave me close to IBS!-- Stools that would not form and left me in constant fear of SH-ARTING. However, stopping meant stools too hard that would continue to rip.  I was in such a bad way.  My local sprouts was helping me pick out another detox regimen after going off the Miralax and landing back into a struggle state. This is an embarrassing topic; one you just don't discuss but for some reason I explained what was happening to the young lady.  She gently put back the Detox kit and led me to a refrigerated case.  Here we picked out a brand called Garden of Life.

What happens next is a game changer.  For the first few days, I experienced POO and a lot of it.  The plus is was not the hard kind I had been suffering with.  (Remember at this point I had been constipated again)  Now that I look back I realize I had some back up FOR SURE.  Once this passed, I experienced a new way of making POO.  A once a day, normal, formed, and not hard.  NICE right??? Well it was for me. 

Over the past few years I have come to some of my own conclusions.  First, our meats are injected with antibiotics.  This could be our number one killer of healthy gut FLORA.  (Antibiotics do not discriminate--they kill everything) Many sicknesses start in our digestion system.   Most of us do not eat Greek yogurts or fermented foods that would help replace our FLORA naturally.  I am not an expert and do not pretend to be.  Always discuss supplements with your health care provider.  My doctor I was seeing for Weight Loss agreed with me.  She stated that as a supplement there is much more needed research; however, she has seen a difference in her patients that are willing to try them. 

I have tried a few brands and the can be COSTLY.  I found one that I find works WELL and is very cost effective.  You can read my review here:

I will update my weight in the morning. It's been a super busy day!! Jennifer

Friday, December 2, 2016

Holiday Crash and Burn Plan

Well, Holiday festivities are in full swing.  Sometimes I wish I really did not enjoy food the way I do.  Anyone else?-- See, I need to get on plan and stay on plan.  But my mind says, ewwww... you have a baby shower and hubbz Company Christmas party tomorrow.  NO way you can stay on plan...  and I begin to excuse eating bad today, tomorrow, and Sunday too.... 

21 days to go and this is not helping!-- Well in actuallity they were Bugles... and technically not free.  7/11 had a buy one get one for $1.

Just going to have to grin and bear it!- Diet Bet is in full effect and YUP, I lost zero- zlitch- nada- this week. 
Week 1-Starting Weight- 298.9 lbs. 
Week 2-289.9 lbs. 
Week 3
Week 4-286.9 lbs. Goal Weight by 12/23…ummmmm Merry Christmas to ME!  I will ad the scale pic later because.... I ran off and left my phone today... SMH.

Exciting things are coming!  Stay tuned, I just did not want to be late on my update.  Just registered my Etsy Shop.  Let's see what little pretties I will produce.


Saturday, November 26, 2016

Creation Corner~Baby's 1st Tutu~Baby Shower Gift

Happy AFTER Turkey Day Weekend everyone.  Just jumping right in with this week's update.

Hopefully, everyone had their fill of fun and family.  This Holiday is a lost cause for me.  I enjoy it so much I just will not deprive myself.  Good thing is there are no leftovers.  Bad thing!!!! Ummmm--- THERE ARE NO LEFTOVERS.  Who cooks Thanksgiving weekend?  You guessed it, this chick right here will be. Did you find any good shopping deals?  I have to say I did find a few.  

A new friend of mine is due in December with a beautiful baby girl and I decided to work on a gift for the shower.  I am finally at a point where I am focusing more on my creative vibe.  I would love to craft something just for you.  So stay tuned for many different projects!
This is a Diaper Cake arrangement.  It includes newborn size huggies, baby's 1st TuTu, a matching onsie, matching leggings, and matching shoes or booties.  This one was done in purple which stands for Royalty.  Very fitting for the little girl it is made for.  The saying on front, “Stay away Boys, my daddy works out” is very fitting for her daddy! (A good friend of JD’s)  I can customize any color or theme, starting at $30.00.  Price will increase based in items added to the arrangement.  I have to admit, if you are giving a shower these make GREAT Functional Centerpieces!-- A decoration you don't have to throw away because mom will use the entire gift!

Before I close let’s get a quick update on my weight loss journey!-- Monday, I will be released from my foot surgery. I am kind of excited.  Still have some soreness today--but that is ok!  I jumped right in and started a DIETBET.  You might remember it.  This one I did just for the next 4 weeks.  I will need to lose 12% of my body weight to win.  Not so sure just how I am going to achieve it yet; but I am officially underway.  Need to keep the holiday pounds at bay?—Well you can join me!  $35 to play and win your share of the pot.  Starts today!  Not sure about the wager?  Well, I did join one for $10 too.  Get in by December 1st!

Don’t wait until the New Year!

Week 1-Starting Weight- 298.9 lbs. 
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4-286.9 lbs. Goal Weight by 12/23…ummmmm Merry Christmas to ME!

Well off to think of some more creative things..... See you next week.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Starting over hurts... It always has and I imagine it always will.

Well, I have not updated for almost 2 1/2 months and as I mentally begin to list off my reasons, all I hear is excuse, excuse, excuse.  For the most part my mind is right.

My son, pre-man at 17 and all took a hard fall and managed to fracture both is ankle and knee on different legs.  I had lulled myself into a sense of almost being finished.  He is the baby.  The last one.  This was a definite set back and frankly; I was blindsided.  All that extra time I had been enjoying?  It dried right on up.  It's true; they will never stop being our bay-bees.  I am Grateful that God allowed him to heal with no surgery.  We have a bout coming up with ankle and knee rehab.  But I know he will be stronger when finished.

Due to his accident, my foot surgery was delayed.  I found myself in pain that was uncontrollable.  You would have thought it funny to see me try to Praise Dance with my Church Family.  It's called the Jericho March for a reason.  Every painful step bore a request for healing for both my son and myself.  Those closest to me knew and could tell the pain was excruciating.  Sometimes you have to dance in pain.  I can't explain it.  You just have to do it. So happy that my procedure went well and I am home recovering.

My project management classes are swiftly underway and I am struggling to keep up. Reasonsable reasons right?  Well maybe.  I am not sure that I had to drift off my path.  I just think I let it happen.

Weight wise:  I am a bit amazed.  My last blog weigh in was the last week in September.  I have not been on HCG in over 3 months.  Surprisingly, I feel like I have gained it all back.  Have not been on the scale because I did not want to be disappointed.  Today I stepped on the scale and was relieved! God keeps us when we can't keep ourselves.
Last weigh in:  288.8 lbs. (TOM)
Today's weigh in: 290.8 I did not take a pic but I will get back with it.  I actually did not remember what my last weight was and was sure this was at least 10lbs heavier.

Yes it is a 2 lb gain.  No I am not upset with it.  I think you can guess my eating has been all over the place.  I tried to maintain my activity level and finally it subsided. Starting over is going to hurt and you best believe I know it.  Activity limited while I heal; but no reason why I can not work on my eating again.  #ThanksgivingAndAll

When I first envisioned this blog, I saw it as a way to share #TheAdventuresOfHizRib.  My journey for a healthy lifestyle as just one faucet of many.  I have found this extremely difficult!  Turns out, I am super private and not always in the mood for sharing.  Well. I will be working on that.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.
Find a Grateful spirit and you will find miracles.
More adventures to come, and regular posts starting 11/25.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Back in Business on 10/21

Just a quick update.  I have started my Project Management classes and my life has really been hectic.  Including exercising and eating.

Will be back on 10/21- with weekly updates on Fridays from here on out.


Monday, September 26, 2016

Cucumber Chips (review) and My Next Conquest....

I am so excited!-- This weekend I was in "SNACK MODE" and my usual go to consists of salt and crunch.  This for me can be detrimental since it is sooooo easy to crunch right through a bag of chips.  I mean, really, chips chew down to nothing.

Hence, I was at Sprouts and saw a new-ish item.  I have tried the Okra chips, and they are delectable.  The Veggie chips are so~so.  The green bean chips will do in a pinch.  But let me introduce you to my new favorite pinch hitter!  Cucumber chips.  I love cucumber.  They smell clean!--and refreshing.  They are great for weight loss because you can eat alot for next to no calories.  They help to hydrate you from the inside, and flush out toxins.  Albeit, fried cucumbers may not keep this ability.

Yes, they are fried... but I still had to just try them.  And as far as fried goes... WELL these are not the end of the war.  Really, I could have done much worse!  I did find several recipes for baked ones and I think I might try them.  I love Kale chips.

So home they went and what better way to test them out then with my favorite Garlic Hummus.  The texture is light and airy.  The taste, well they actually taste like cucumbers!  SO I dipped to my heart's content.  I will definitely buy again!

Time to update on progress.  This is the 3rd week without HCG and I am fluctuating.  My results are down overall however I am the same weight as when I stopped the HCG.

WEEK 1 NO HCG 288 lbs.  
WEEK 2 NO HCG 291.4 lbs.   
WEEK 3 NO HCG 288.8 lbs. (TOM)

Which brings me to my next conquest.  I have started a DietBet and committed to losing 10% of my body weight over the next 6 months.  I will write more in-depth about it later.  For now, you can see my first goal and the date I must achieve it by.  Not only do I need to be 282 lbs. by 10/19, I have to maintain to surpass it for the next round.  This will be a real journey, as I have only been losing 5 lbs or so monthly.   Check in on my often; let's see if I can make this a reality.  ~~Jennifer

Monday, September 19, 2016

StepBet and the Hunny Prize Pot

HMMMMM... Hunny Prize Pot!-- This was sweet when I found it; and bittersweet as I write about it.  Back in July, I stumbled upon this app/game that was sure to increase my movement.  StepBet had me put up my $40 bucks and in return I was now committed to walking.  At first, the goals seemed very high to me and I struggled as I tried to adapt.

I needed this weekly to stay in the game and not lose my money:
2-Stretch days at 14,028 steps
4-Active days at 10,428 steps and
1-Rest day

I was not sure what to make of it but I was determined I would not lose my money I had put in.  I watched as the pot grew to over $50k and visions of "winning it all" began to entice me and encourage me to do better than my very best.  Especially tasking was at this time I was hitting the 10k goal M-F with next to no movement on the weekend and feeling pretty darn good about it.

So, I am off... the race begins.  Over the 6 weeks for the contest I sweat, cried, hurt, and did it again.  Week after Week.  By the 4th week I began to notice that it was not as hard as it had been.  In fact; I was no longer concerned about making it. I realized that HEY you!-- Your moving!  And you’re doing it every single day!-- YOU Go!-- and other people were noticing too.  An old co-worker asked me if I slept because my "fitbit challenge" results increased, and I picked up a very valuable GYM Buddy.  So thankful for my redheaded friend.

Along the way I figured out the money thing is rigged.  -- WE went from 1365 players to 903 finishing.  The winners were to split the pot.  But at the end of this rainbow is the realization that this was never about the money.  The App developers keep 25% (12.5% during the beta testing) and will forfeit their cut ONLY in the event that the winners do would not get their original investment back.  I DID WIN...My payout was $52.91.  A bit over 30% ROI and let's be honest!  When it comes to investment vehicles that is a great return!  Even better because I invested in myself.

NOW.  Quite honestly... I loved this and it motivated me.  I am glad for the winners because it means they made their goals to.  I did see many comments about not winning more and I really was saddened by them.  Because that means that person failed to meet the goal they set for themselves.

And, the game/app makers know this!-- It is set up for 6 weeks to discourage those who need money quick or the gambling type.  It is intentional.

Fast-forward to today.  I am currently in my second challenge doing the same as before.  Bittersweet because the Plantar Fasciitis and Bone Spur have ended my time on the treadmill.  This morning I resolved to bike for 50 minutes and I did complete it.  To my dismay it only gets around 3k in steps.  But so are the life choices.  I do not want foot surgery so I am minding what the Dr. says.  I have this week and the next to finish this second round.  I will decide if I can do anymore based on how well my feet are responding to treatment.

The same company has another app/game that is actually their first product.  DietBet.  I have joined and will write about it next week.  This one concerns me; because I continue to go up and down.  But I am hoping the thought of losing my funding will keep me on track like it did above!

I will tell you why there is a "word" next week!
Quick update--because accountability is everything!  I figure, even when I am disappointed with the gain I need to be honest with myself.

WEEK 1 NO HCG 288 lbs.  
WEEK 2 NO HCG 291.4 lbs.  

Every minute, every hour, every day, every week just keep moving forward!