Thursday, January 31, 2013

Cold Is An Understatement!!!

It's FREEZING out here in Iowa...again!  But being born and raised here, it doesn't shock me in the least bit.  Right now it's 5 degrees with a wind chill of -16 below.  So yep, I think that qualifies and REALLY FREAKING COLD!!!!!! 

Thank goodness, once again, for my parents and their treadmill...otherwise I wouldn't have finished Day 2, Week 2 of C25K!  It's getting easier and easier as I go along to get thru the workout.  I say this now, but looking at week 4 and week 5 have me scared.  But, that's still a couple of weeks away, so no use fretting about it now, right?!  There doesn't seem to be a break in the weather anytime soon, so it looks like I'm treadmill bound on Saturday to finish off week 2. 

Last week I had talked about getting the Tune Belt for my phone, so I can use it for the C25K app (which is totally worth the $1.99) and play my music.  I have always used an armband, but with my bat wings, it's hard to find one that fits right.  Plus, I have the Samsung Galaxy S3.  The thing is huge!  It's like running with a brick on my arm.  For reals!  So, I started looking for an alternative and I found the Tune Belt and decided to try it.  I.LOVE.IT.  It rocks!  It's made to be worn around your waist and it is adjustable!  It fits my phone and waist perfectly.  I have only used it 2 times, but both times I liked it.  It doesn't slip around or fall down.  The clear plastic screen on the front is easy to see thru AND you can access your screen without any problems.  There's a small Velcro pocket on the back of the belt, where you can hold a credit card and house key, or some money.  There's not a lot of Velcro, but it rests against your body, so I would think it will hold.  I might attach some more Velcro, I just haven't decided yet.  This was worth every penny of the $25 it cost.  2 thumbs up from this girl!!!!

Well, I  need to get a move on.  I have to work at 2pm and I still have half a protein shake to finish.  Here's the best song of my workout!!!!

Until next time!
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Monday, January 28, 2013

Day 1, Week 2 Of C25K Done!

Okay everyone!  Did you get up and get your walk/run in?  I did!  Are you still on the fence about starting the C25K program?  I can completely understand that.  Never in a million years did I think I would run.  But, I'm telling you, YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!  I know you can!  And, if I can do it, anyone can.  Trust me! I have a whole tab up there at the top of my page with all kinds of running/walking music.  I've taken the guess work out of finding some songs, so you can't use that excuse either!

The weather is still gloomy, slushy and now foggy, but it's starting to warm up out there.  I ran on my parent's treadmill again today, but can't wait to get outside.  There's just something about fresh air during your workout.

Alright...if you haven't done your workout today, get to it!  But first, here's the best song of my workout.  I love this song!

Until next time!
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Sunday, January 27, 2013

I Love Pinterest!

Today was a gloomy, cruddy, typical winter day in Iowa.  Since 3am we have been in a Freezing Rain Advisory.  YUCK!  The advisory has expired, but it's still just a good day to stay inside, curl up on the couch with the puppies and just relax.

I had to work last night from 6pm to 6am and we were dead.  Now, one would think working a Saturday over night in a 911 dispatch center would be busy.  Usually it is, but since we were supposed to get icky weather, nothing happened.  NOTHING!  So, what did I do all night you might ask?

Yep!  I was on Pinterest.  On my cellphone.  And yep, I had to recharge my phone 2 different times.  But I found some REALLY good crockpot recipes.  And you know how much I LOVE my crockpot!  If you've never been on Pinterest, you should probably start.  Go sign up!  It's free!  And addictive!  It's like window shopping for whatever you want!  You can create as many boards as you would like, about anything you like!  How can you go wrong there?!  I have...well, let's just say a lot of boards.  In fact, last night I was faced with a dilemma.  I found a dip recipe that you make in the crockpot.  Which board do you pin that on?  The Dips and Apps one?  Or the Crockpot Goodness one?  After much thought and consulting with my fellow co-dispatcher (who may or may not of also been pinning) we decided on Crockpot Goodness.  I just couldn't make up my mind.  Sad isn't it?  LOL

When I got off work at 6am, I came home (the freezing rain had started about 5am, so the roads were SLICK!) and I bet you'll never guess in a million years, what I put in my Crockpot?  Any takers?  Crock Pot Taco Chicken Chili.  Again!  I am hooked on this stuff!  I can't get enough of it!  And would you believe, last night I found another recipe that seems really similar, only it uses....wait for it..wait for it.....cream cheese!  Yummo!  Here is the recipe...check it out!  I think I might make it next weekend, but of course, change it up a bit.  For starters, I would probably serve mine plain.  Rice and I just don't have a good relationship post-op.  We had to break up for many reasons, but I'm okay with it.  Rice for post-ops is nothing but empty nutrition in my own opinion.  The other change I would make is to use more chicken.  I've made a couple crockpot recipes with cream cheese and I have learned a valuable lesson.  Use the fully loaded cream cheese.  I know, I know, the calories!  The Fat!  But when you use reduced fat or fat free cream cheese (or even sour cream) it just doesn't melt down smoothly.  It basically curdles and looks nasty.  It's just not pleasant.  Now, if you can handle it, by all means, do the reduced fat or fat free stuff.  I just can't.  It has to look good for me to eat it. 

The things you can find on Pinterest are endless.  If you're already on Pinterest, follow me!  If you're not, sign up and follow me!  Now, get going!  Get pinning!  Get addicted! 

Until next time!
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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Jelly Bean Race 2013

What's the Jelly Bean Race you ask?  It's a virtual race that has been put together by Run With Jess who, by the way, is amazing!  I happened to stumble upon her blog while I was on Facebook.  She has put this race together for the 3rd year and it looks like a lot of fun!  

I actually signed up (registration is free) but I plan on purchasing a Jelly Bean Race Shirt just to show that I actually did it!   This will be my first of three 5k's for the season.  I plan on of course this one, the Dam to Dam in June and the Color Run in July.  I just need to find one in August and September and I'm good to go for the season I think.  But right now, I'm going to get thru the first 3 and see how I do.  I don't want to set myself up for failure.

So, what are you waiting for?!  Go sign up for the Jelly Bean Race...what do you have to lose?! 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Week One Of C25K Is In The Books!

WAHOO!!!!!!  Week one of the C25K is in the books!  I know, you only do it every other day, but that's more than I've done since about October, so...WAY TO GO ME!!!!!!

The first thing I did when I came home from running/walking?  Well, make my daily Click Protein Drink and then brag about finishing Week 1 on Facebook!  Then I ordered my new Tune Belt for my phone since my old arm band is shot and then came here to share my progress with all of you.  

For those of you doing this same program, give yourself a huge pat on the back.  We may not be coming in first, but at least we're crossing the finish line, right?!  RIGHT?!    Way to go everyone, I'm proud of us all!

And now, for the best part of the favorite songs of the workout. So, here you go!  Take a listen!  Until next time!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Day 2, Week 1 C25K Done!

I just finished day 2 of the C25K just a little bit ago and I have to say, I'm pretty pumped!  I had to do it inside on my parent's treadmill (thank you mom and dad!), it wasn't as "fun" as being outside but at least I went and did it.  My mom was a hoot!  She would walk by the doorway (their treadmill is in a separate room) and pretend to be running by, make faces, ect.  It made the time go by so much faster.  I'm still waiting for the right time to tell them they need to install a T.V. for me, their favorite daughter, just so I can work out LOL

Anywho, I just wanted to stop by and tell you all that AND of course share the BEST song of the work out.  If you don't have this song, I highly suggest you get it.  It rocks!  In fact, if you want it, leave me your e-mail and I'll send it to you!  Now...listen! 

Until next time!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

So Sore!

Well, Day 1 Week 1 of the C25K program was a success!  I can barely walk my legs hurt so bad, so I'm taking it as a sign that 1. I'm out of shape and 2. I worked all the right muscles yesterday.  Yippee for me?  All I know, is the pain better move out by tomorrow because I'm going full force into Day 2!   So, take that!

I was super, SUPER lazy today so I deiced to make Diet Cola Chicken but put it in the crockpot.  It didn't turn out too bad, but I probably could have gotten by with about a 1/2 a can of diet soda instead of a full can.  But it was still edible, so I'm okay with it. 

I haven't updated my picture lately and since we're still fairly new to 2013, I'm going to post the most recent one that was taken last Friday after my friend Allison cut and colored it.  I don't know what I would do without her...she's my hair styling goddess that understands my need for lots of blonde and short spiky hair!

Katie 2013

 So yeah, I really didn't do much at all today...I think saying I was a bum might be an understatement.  But if you look up, you'll see I added my workout/running tunes!  That took me a long time, I didn't realize I had THAT many songs.  I mean, yes, I transferred them one by one, but I didn't think it was THAT many.  I'm still adding the artist's names, but this will get you started.  I can't listen to the same songs over and over, hence all of the songs.  I'm sure I'll be adding to it, just not sure when yet. 

On a different note, I'm looking at getting something to do at home to workout on my off running days.  I have Zumba for the Wii and I like it, but am not that good at it.  I thought about getting this Zumba Body Shaping System but I'm not 100% sure yet.  Has anyone used this?  If so...please share!

I'm also thinking of getting this cute little crock-pot to take to work.  It would be perfect for all kinds of things and leftovers.  And the price isn't bad either!  Working 2p-10p isn't the best shift in the world and eating the food provided at work for us is full of carbs and calories.  That is my own personal downfall.  But if I would get one of these, I could take soups, chili and even left over casseroles! 

And, in my search for the perfect armband for my phone, I have found this.  Not an armband, but a belt!  Because I have batwings, finding an armband that fits and stays put isn't easy.  I thought the belt might be my answer.  And you can wear it as a sling as well, but I see that getting in my way somehow.  I am what people call accident prone :)

So, there you have it.  The very exciting day of Katie.  I didn't do a thing...but online shopping!  LOL

Saturday, January 19, 2013

C25K: Day 1 Week 1

Today I finished Day 1, Week 1 of the C25K program.  Holy cow am I out of shape!  I thought I was gonna drop over dead!  Good thing my preferred place of running is in the cemetery (not the treadmill, like above) so if something happens to me, they can just roll me to the family plot and be done with it!

It was about 46 out today when I decided to head on out.  Now, getting to this point this time around was a pain in the butt!  I had gotten a new phone and decided I wanted to use my phone for running with my C25K app and load a play list onto it.  How hard can that be you ask?  Amazingly hard.  Trust me.  I had been working on transferring my play list ALL WEEK LONG.  I ended up transferring the songs one by one.  All 178 of them.  If I ever get the nerve up, I'll post my running list, but right now, I'm pretty spent with it.

Anyways, going back to my running/walking.  It was about 46 out, but 46 in Iowa in the middle of January isn't as warm as people think.  Especially when you get out in the open.  Brrrr.  So I decided I would have to layer, but I can't have too many layers because I have to be able to move, but I want to be warm.  Decisions, decisions.  So, after pulling on a compression tank, a long sleeve Omi-Heat shirt by Columbia AND a running shirt with thumb holes, I was just about ready to hit the pavement.  Dug out my knee braces and I was off! 

The first couple of runs/walks went off without a hitch.  Then I hit a wall.  I was cold, my nose was running and I was getting crabby.  You know, the usual.  But I kept going...and I'm SO glad I did.  And then, the best song of the run came on...Pause, by Pitbull!  I LOVE this song!  Here, have a listen for yourself!

After that song came on, it gave me the energy to keep going and to finish the whole workout.  I'm going to take a moment to pat myself on the back (*patting*) and you all should too.  I came across the best quote the other day and for the life of me I can't remember who said it, but it was awesome.  "I may not come in first, but at least I cross the finish line".  Whoever said it, I think, is on to something.  I think it might just be my new mantra! 

15:43 Min/Mile  That's where I left off last Fall.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Have You Ever Thought About Running?

Well, have you?  Did you ever think in a million years that you might actually enjoy this form of torture?  I know I never did...until last year.  I had been bit by the 5K bug.  Yep, you know that craze, the C25K (couch to 5k) plan.

There are many things to think about before you jump into your first 5K or even before jumping into the C25K workout.  First of all, this is a running pace that really is do-able for all of us.  Just have patience...if you're not ready to move onto the next week, no worries!  I've been known to do the same week twice because I just wasn't "there" yet and I knew if I tried to move forward, I wouldn't finish it and be mad at myself.  There is nothing wrong with repeating a day or a week.  If you take that advice, I promise you, you will be running in no time. 

There are many different apps out there for you to follow or download to your iPod or smartphone.  I have tried a bunch of different ones, but the one by Zen Labs is by far, in my opinion, the easiest one to use.  You can make your own playlists and listen to them while you work out.  It's AWESOME!!!!  
Now, before you get out there and hit the pavement, make sure you have a good pair of shoes for running, pants (that you won't trip on) that are comfy enough to move around in (I like to make sure I have a little...wiggle room for my thighs) and a comfortable shirt to run in.  If you're like me, you can't run in sweatpants and a sweatshirt.  They are just too plain heavy and when you start to sweat, they are clingy and I HATE that!  I love these pants, usually wear shirts like these (I HAVE to have thumb holes) or these and of course my good running shoes.  I'm a New Balance girl personally, but there are plenty of other options out there.  Take the time to visit a running store that will specially fit you for the shoe that is just right for you.  It's well worth the $$$ and will save your feet, knees and back down the road.

And last, but not least...your playlist.  Music is an important part of my running workout.  So many songs give me encouragement to keep going, whether it's the beat, the lyrics or just my favorite song.  I have to have my music.  If running is something you really end up getting into, I recommend getting a good armband, a good pair of ear buds and of course, a good music player.  I go between my iPod and my phone and am still looking for the perfect armband myself.  When I find it, I'll let you know!

I'm getting pretty pumped to get back into running.  I took about 3 months off, so the first week of the C25K is going to kick my butt...but that's what I need.  I have my sights set on 3 different 5K's so I need to get my rear in gear!  The first one being in April.  Then one in June and one in July. 

I need some new workout music, anyone have any suggestions?  Or does anyone have anything to add to this post or any questions?  I welcome them :) So, what are you waiting for?!  Let's get going!!!!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

What Is Today Good For?

Brrrrr!  It's flipping cold in Iowa today!  Last week was "decent" for temps given the fact it's January, but by the end of the week, it was raining, then it's 16 degrees!  So, brrrrr might be an understatement.  Especially for us post-ops who tend to get cold no matter how hot or cold out it is.

Over the past 2 winters, my thermostat has gone from 75, to 72, to 70.  Currently I'm trying out 68 and dang it, it's just too cold!  LOL  So, what's a good way to warm up?  That's right...COFFEE!!!

Now, that wasn't something I created...I only wish I was that talented!  But doesn't it look nice and warm and cozy?  Makes me want to curl up with my Kindle Fire and read.  But first I have "chores" to do.  Enter my pouty face.

I worked overnight last night, so I got off at 6am this morning.  I started a load of laundry, did a load of dishes and put the Crockpot Taco Chicken Chili in the slow cooker and went to sleep.  I crashed around 7am and wanted to be up at noon.  Well, it's after 3, so as you can tell, I didn't make my wake up call.  Oh well, everyone deserves a lazy Sunday every now and then, right? 

P.S. I know I just made the Crockpot Taco Chicken Chili last weekend, but dang it!  It's AWESOME!  I gave half of my batch to my mom and dad and froze the other half in canning jars.  Yep!  Canning jars!  They are perfect for one serving!  Then when you want one, take off the lid, cover with a paper towel and pop it in the microwave.  Try it! 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Weight Loss Surgery and Personal Relationships

Let me start by saying these are simply my personal thoughts and feelings and that this isn't my usual happy go lucky post.  There's no study to back this, there aren't any stats to back up what I'm saying.  This is a personal observation made by me and me alone.  You may agree or disagree with me and that is okay.  Now that I've said that, let's get started!

I'm currently 2 years, 3 months post-op from weight loss surgery.  As many of you know, it's been one heck of a ride.  Emotionally, mentally and physically.  I've watched myself and my body change in ways I never dreamed were possible.  I've also watched my personality change...sometimes good, sometimes bad.  And the hormones...dear God, the swings!  Thank goodness those are over!  And I'm sure the general public is also glad those are done!

Along with all of the things above, I've watched many people walk into my life...and walk right back out.  Some came in when I was "fat" and were there for me thru everything.  EVERYTHING.  But when I got close to their size?  They bolted.  I've had that happen more than once.  These were people I had considered a close or best friend.  Someone I would share my ups and downs with.  I'm not very good at sharing things, so to talk to someone was huge.  And then when they would have nothing to do with me, I was always left wondering what I had done wrong.  It took losing 2 close friends to figure out that for once it wasn't me.  It was JEALOUSY.  And man, can it rear it's ugly head!

I had become a "threat" to them.  Because I had been overweight for more than half my life, people had gotten use to seeing me being bigger.  When the weight started coming off, people started noticing me more than my friends.  When I was close to their size and we were on "even" playing ground it became too much for them.  They were no longer in the lime light and I was, which was uncomfortable.  I still feel uncomfortable when that happens to me. 

Embracing who we have become is easier said than done.  As an overweight person, we are labeled by society as the "happy fat person", the one who is always cracking jokes and making people laugh, when deep down, we are hurting.  We are generalized as lazy slobs, who only eat, can't or don't take care of ourselves, but man, are we funny!  Have you ever noticed that?  Have you noticed how hard it is to shake that, even though some of us are a mere fraction of who we used to be?  How you can pass a mirror one minute and see a super skinny person looking back at us, but the next minute you see a slob of a mess?

A couple of months ago, I was told by someone VERY close to me that they were tired of hearing about how I used to be fat.  Really?!  YOU'RE tried of hearing about it?  The person that's never been overweight in your life?  Try living it!  Try breaking thru all the fat stereotypes!  Try being me, overweight for more than half my life!  Man...I was pi$$ed!  And hurt.  I never knew that being "fat" would have led to someone saying something that mean to me after all the hard work I've done.  Is this jealousy?  Is this spite?  What is it exactly?

Those are questions that will never be answered, but that's a statement that has led me to this post and of course one of my favorite sayings...GO POUND SAND!  Sometimes in life, we analyze and over analyze what people say to us and what people think about us.  There comes a point and a time where you either need to let it go, vent it out or ignore it.  People are mean, end of discussion.  People who have never been thru what we've gone thru will never understand how much a statement like can hurt.

What are your thoughts on this?  Have any of you lost a friend or a loved one because you simply took the extra steps and determination to get healthy and have a better lifestyle?  Do you think it's just as hard for them to go thru this with us?  Perhaps they needs some sort of an outlet?  A support group as well?  Does weight loss surgery also take a toll on them?  These are the things the surgeon never prepares you for or talks about.  Remember, our mental and emotional health is just as important as our physical health.  I would be interested in hearing your opinions on all of this.

Monday, January 7, 2013

A Little Slow Cooker Goodness

Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE my slow cooker.  I try to make everything I can in's quick, it's easy...and best of all?  Wait for it...wait for it...clean up is a breeze!!!!

Fall and Winter are by far my most favorite seasons to use my slow cooker, but that doesn't stop me from using it all year round.  I have 4, yes count them 4 slow cookers.  And yes, every single one of them is a MUST!  I have a small one that can be used for warm dips, a medium sized one that's perfect for about 2 chicken breast halves and some veggies.  Then I have 2 large ones.  One large one I use only for work and then my other one only for home use.

If you're in the market for a new slow cooker, may I suggest this one?  This thing ROCKS!  It's programmable...and worth the extra $$$ just for that feature.  You'll see why when I post the recipe.  But really, it truly is worth the money.  There are 2 different modes, manual and programmable.  One of the best features in my opinion is the keep warm one in the program mode.  After your food is done cooking in that mode, it automatically switches to keep warm.'s the little things in life, isn't it?

Anywho, let's move on to the best part of this post....Dum Da Da Dummmmm (enter cheesy drum roll) Crock Pot Taco Chicken Chili!!!!!  I promise you, you're going to love this.  L.O.V.E. IT!

Mmmm...before the 10 hours!

Now, the first time I make a recipe, I like to TRY to follow it to a T.  So I did that...for the most part...Not really.  ;)  I'll let you know what I did to mine, which really wasn't much different than what it calls for. My changes are in the ( ) 's.  So, without further it is!

Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili
Servings: 10

1 onion, chopped (I used minced, I'm not an onion fan)
1 16-oz can black beans (drained)
1 16-oz can kidney beans (drained)
1 8-oz can tomato sauce (I used 2 8-oz cans)
10 oz package frozen corn kernels (I used a 16oz bag of frozen corn)
2 14.5-oz cans diced tomatoes w/chilies (Rotel...Love That Stuff)
1 packet taco seasoning
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp chili powder
24 0z. (3) boneless skinless chicken breasts (I used frozen...I'm lazy!)
  Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese (For topping)

Combine beans, onion, chili peppers, corn, tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder and taco seasoning in a slow cooker.  Place chicken on top and cover. Cook on low for 10 hours or on high for 6 hours (I opted for the 10 hours).  Half hour before serving, remove chicken and shred. Return chicken to slow cooker and stir in.  Top with shredded cheese.


Now I know, the recipe says to take the chicken out and shred it and then put it back in the slow cooker.  Umm, no, that sounds messy.  SOOOOOooooo....I used this handy little gadget from Pampered Chef

Now, that's my friend's site, so don't feel like you have to use her's, that's just where I go ;)  It is the best $11 I have spent!    I know as WLS post-ops we all have some "tools of the trade" and this has quickly become mine for recipes like this.  

Bet you can't guess what's in my medium slow cooker for dinner tonight?  That's right...leftovers!  Yummo!  Enjoy!!!!! 

P.S.  Check out this Gooseberry Patch Book for more slow cooker recipes.  I just purchased this and can't wait to try some of their recipes.  I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE their books.  They have recipes submitted by a bunch of different people.  There's something for everyone's taste buds in their books. 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

What Does 2013 Hold For You?

So, I'm just a few days shy of wishing you all a Happy New Year!!!  And about 5 months short of blogging.  I admit...I have become a horrible blogger.  I NEED to change that!  It's not that I don't have the time, or the's just that I've become lazy. 

So, one of the things I'm re-committing myself to is my blog.  I've always enjoyed it, much like I've always enjoyed writing in my journal.  Not writing in my diary, my journal.  A lot of work goes into picking out the right journal for your next writing journey.  I have had my eye on this one, but just haven't broken down and bought it yet.  Usually I try not to spend more than $10 on a journal, but this one might just make its way into my writing hands.

There's a story behind my journaling.  Back when I was looking into having my gastric bypass surgery, they had a lot of ideas for us to take away from the many classes we had to take to learn about ourselves, our surgery and our future.  One of the things they suggested for us emotional eaters (me) was to journal daily.  More specifically, write down 3 really bad things that happened that day, 3 greats things that happened and our feelings in general.  By writing down those 3 bad things, we were getting the negative emotions out.  You know, the ones that usually take you to that bag of potato chips, or that Snickers bar.

So, I took them up on it.  What did I have to lose?  Not a thing!  And from that day on, I have written down 3 bad things and 3 good things daily.  When I write those bad things down, I'm done with them.  I don't bring them up again and I TRY not to think about them.  I know that last one is easier said than done, but it really has helped me a lot.

2012 was a roller coaster of a year for me.  There were many ups, some downs and a lot of in betweens.  For 2013, I want to eliminate the downs.  I'm over being angry at things I have no control over.  I'm over the hatred for people I feel have wronged me.  I'm over negative people.  No one needs any of this in their lives...especially those of us who have worked too hard to get where we are at.  I'm not going back to 2012...and I don't think you should either!  So, what does 2013 hold for you?

Bring It!!! Don't Sing It!!!

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