Category Archives: Accomplishments

Okay, I’m Throwing in the Towel

Last week, I excitedly shared that I had found a new Weight Watchers group and a new gym in my new city. I was so pleased with myself as I wrote that post because I have desperately longed to get back into a groove since my world flipped upside down over the summer. But I received comments from a reader who expressed her disappointment in me for not losing more than 12 pounds since losing my first 100 pounds, and I’m disappointed in myself too so I give up. I mean, if all I can do is lose 112 pounds in a year a half then surely it must be time to throw in the towel…so thanks for giving me a new perspective “Maureen.” It’s obvious that I need not worry about moving forward so bring on the Blue Bell Moolenium Crunch…I quit!

PSYCH!

Quitting has never been an option for me nor is it an option now. I love losing weight even if it’s not fast enough to please every single person reading this blog. This journey is for me anyway. And my blog is about my progress and my ups and downs. And that’s the way it will continue to be.

I love comments – sharing them with others and receiving them. When I don’t have something positive to say, I tend to stay quiet, but I can’t control how anyone reacts to what I write. And I wouldn’t want to. I feel blessed to say that after receiving over 5,000 comments in the last year and a half that I can count all of the negatives on one hand. A couple of those negatives came over the weekend when “Maureen” left some comments worth discussing so bear with me as I work through them.

She said…

Please don’t take this the wrong way but I’m a bit disappointed and confused as to why you’ve only lost 12lbs since you hit the 100lbs lost mark in the Spring and that was months ago. Is WW no longer effective or are you just overindulging? There’s another blog I follow on your blogroll where the author’s dropped over 50lbs since the Spring on WW too.”

You can see the full comments here.

Then after several comments of encouragement from others, she left a follow-up comment. She said,

I’m just wondering as someone who’s followed her journey in blogland how honest Kenz is really being with us followers and herself. If someone’s really watching every bite and working out like mad there’s no way they’d only lose 12lbs in 6 months (barring a medical condition), especially when they lost 100lbs in a year. This is way beyond a plateau, the numbers (and words written here) simply don’t add up. Just sayin

I’ve been extraordinarily open about my weight-loss since Day One of this blog. And while I’ve chosen not to turn my blog into a daily pity party about the trials I’ve faced recently, which do include a medical condition, the fact remains that I have struggled greatly. But I have not hidden that fact. And I certainly haven’t claimed that I “watch every bite and workout like mad.” I typically do not eat beyond my daily POINTS allowance, but I’m much more productive when I eat high protein and high fiber foods as part of balanced meals. Also, you can see my workout schedule on my blog.

Life changed drastically, and I was as open as I felt I could be about those struggles. Check out my posts from August..they’re gut-wrenching. Could I have shared more details? Of course…but it was tough to share as much as I did. Is Weight Watchers still effective? Of course it is…Millions have lost, and I’m still losing consistently too.

While “Maureen” left negative comments, I received support from so many of you just as I always do. And those comments mean so much…especially on days in which people seek to tear me down. Where there’s one negative comment, there are more than 20 positives…and this is one of my favorites…

Zedramaqueen said,

“…It’s her blog, and she’s telling her story…and only SHE knows her entire story…Bottom line – it’s Kenz’s life and Kenz’s journey, and we are choosing to read her blog and ride along with her. If we don’t like the ride, we can get off at any time…”

MsGigglepuss said,

…Wow. Weight loss isn’t always one straight line even when you’re following the program. Stress and other factors can really mess things up! Chill out and use your energy for good, not cranky doubting.

And Deb said,

Re: Maureen’s confusion. chuckle. I think the fact that you lost 12 pounds instead of gaining 40 pounds is amazing!!!! Ain’t no plan can cover what you’ve put up with in those six months! Unless it would be the WW’s “living in a suitcase while your life is turned upside down” plan.”

Perhaps “Maureen” didn’t mean to be offensive, but she left little clues that lead me to believe she thinks she knows me better than she does. So “Maureen” I would encourage you to continue to read my blog and watch for the continued success that is imminent. But if you’re here to see me drop my remaining weight by April then you will be disappointed. There are blogs you can follow if you wish to see people lose 200 pounds in a year, but that won’t happen on this one.

Weight-loss is not a contest. For me, success has come from making big changes and small changes over time. I could have made a lot of excuses over the summer. Life was hard, but I didn’t give up. Could I have done more for myself? Absolutely! But priorities are personal, and I take full responsibility for my physical and emotional well-being.

I knew that when I began to post about my life so candidly that I would be open to criticism. And I’m okay with that. Do I need that kind of negative encouragement? Nope…Do I deserve it? Nope…but I’m happy to have cleared the air because I’m ready to move forward.

I am ready to see the numbers on the scale drop substantially again, and I am doing what it takes this week to make that happen. I’m trying to get it right just like everyone else on this journey. There’s no easy solution, but I won’t be throwing in the towel anytime soon…just sayin’…

I Did What I Said I’d Do!

In my last post I said I would exercise hard, and I did. It’s almost laughable (except that it’s really not) that it took me so long to remember how good I feel after a good workout. And I do feel good. My body needed to feel the burn, and just as I imagined, I’m ready to face the new day with a renewed energy.

Stretching after doing way too many bicycle crunches. 🙂


Yesterday was a struggle. I forced myself to do what I didn’t want to do, and I am so glad I did because one good choice often leads to another good choice. I exercised, ate well and now it’s time to do it again.

Dinner tonight was a turkey burger, baked sweet potato fries and steamed zucchini. It was relatively low in sodium, high in protein and fiber and delicious!


I may not like what the scale says Thursday because we get what we give. But I know that if I’m diligent I’ll like what I see a week from now. We can spend our entire lives wallowing in regret, or we can do our best to make today better than yesterday. The choice is clear even when it isn’t easy. Yesterday I made the choice to be better, and I’m going to do it again today.

Right Now…

It has been almost a week since I stepped on the scale, and if I get what I deserve the scale will not be kind this week. I was up 0.2 pounds last week which doesn’t really seem like much to worry about, but I am upset with myself for not making the last several days better.

I know exactly what it takes to lose weight. I know how much I should eat and how much I should exercise, but I’m sorry to say that I haven’t done what I needed to do this week. That changes now.

For months, my blog has been a place in which I could share my ups and downs to regain focus and control. And it’s time for me to regain that control again. It’s time for me to workout even though I don’t feel like moving. It’s time to take my own advice.

We can assume, based on my performance in the last several days, that the scale will not show a loss on Thursday. And it would be easy to let that discourage me, but I refuse to let it. I refuse to fight myself like this. I’ve decided, on this Tuesday afternoon, to reclaim the success I’ve had so far. I’ve decided to change my lousy habits right now.

All summer I struggled to keep my head above water physically and emotionally, but I did. I haven’t lost a substantial amount of weight since reaching the 100 pounds milestone, but I’m ready to change that. And I know what I need to do to change that. Knowing that I’ve lost 110 pounds in an incredible feeling, but there’s more work to be done!

So tonight, before I rest my head, I will workout hard. I will sweat until I like it. And I’m confident that I’ll be reminded how much my body craves movement. I’ve said so many times that the days we don’t feel like exercising are the most important days to do it. I’ve let my workouts slip in the last two weeks. Sure, I’ve done a little walking, but my body requires more than that. I require more of myself than that.

This journey is far from over, and I’m in it for the long haul which means I can forget about yesterday and concentrate on today. I didn’t do as well as I could have done this summer, but that doesn’t have to be the end of my story. I have the mental and physical ability to move forward again starting now. And that’s what I’m going to do.

There’s no waiting until tomorrow morning to start fresh. And waiting until Monday just doesn’t work either. I’m going to reclaim the feeling of freedom and accomplishment right now. On that note, I’m off to workout…

Things I’ve Learned

Over the last week I’ve learned a lot about myself. And I believe that self-awareness is an important part of this process so I’m going to share a few things I’ve learned with you.

It is just as important for me to journal my food now as it was a year ago even if I’m much better at eye balling it. I still have to pay attention to everything I put in my mouth because when I don’t track it I can’t be sure exactly what I’ve had. And being unsure causes me to stress more than I should.

My confidence has greatly improved, but there’s still much room for improvement. I am still insecure. It’s not like that’s a total surprise, but my insecurities have surfaced over the last week. Some have been settled for good while others still haunt me a little.

Eating 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables a day makes me feel like a healthier person. I can really feel the difference. I like junk food, but I love the feeling I have when I know I’ve had enough water, fruits and veggies and whole grains. I don’t struggle with this at home everyday, but I definitely did here until yesterday.

I have used my body as an excuse/reason/justification (call it whatever you want) for me to accept less than what I know I deserve. I am not ugly… There’s nothing wrong with me. And while I’ve struggled for a long time to believe it, I am now keenly aware of that fact. I have changed this week, but the most important changes have occurred on the inside. I was broken; now I’m healed.

My body is strong. I could be much stronger, of course. I’m looking forward to it. But the differences I’ve experienced in the last 14 months are incredible. For example, my feet no longer swell up like balloons making me fear for my life. I can jog the distance of the terminal to catch the plane (though I don’t plan to push that one again.) Even if I had missed it, just knowing that I could do it would have thrilled me because it showed endurance that I didn’t have before.

I love to sweat. Yes, I knew this already, but wow…I love Summer, and I love intense heat. Feeling the sun beat down on me is not a new sensation, but liking it is definitely new for me. My body doesn’t mind the hot, humidity I’ve been living in for the last week. In fact, it thrives in it.

I exercise like a champ. Working out, even when I’m out of my regular environment, is something that I thoroughly enjoy. I don’t always love starting (though most days I do,) but I always love the feeling of completion I have when I’m done. And, at this point, there’s no question. I am going to exercise (almost everyday) no matter what.

I am not perfect, but I like the person I am today. If I were already thin, I’d be considered a health nut (most days.) I’m far enough along on my journey to know that I am not going back. I like being a strong, healthy, happy version of myself. So even when I have weeks that are out of the ordinary, I am going to pick myself up and keep moving forward.

Being honest with myself about where I am and where I want to be has changed me in so many ways over the last year, and I’m going to continue growing into the person that I want to be – the person that I am. I have one life, and it is within my power to make it extraordinary.

Flying High with Burdens Lifted

Sometimes good things just happen, and yesterday was definitely one of those days though it didn’t seem like it would be in the beginning. My friend, Char, picked me up to take me to the airport early afternoon. And between my leisurely packing and traffic, I was really late! Passengers were already boarding when I checked in, and the security lines were long. There would be no pre-boarding and discreetly asking for a seat belt extension, but I accepted that because I really did not want to miss my flight.

After getting through security I immediately heard the last boarding call for my flight which was at the opposite end of the terminal. Opposite, as in, the very last gate! I decided that I had nothing to lose so I ran for it. I can’t remember a time in which I’ve run so hard for such a long distance, but I did it. Though I’m sure I looked like I was lightly jogging to others, I felt like my legs were on fire. And I made it! They literally closed the door right behind me, and I was able to take my seat.

Speaking of my seat…I was in the middle of the front row. Really?! This would have encouraged a panic attack in my mind last year, but yesterday it wasn’t bad at all. I had plenty of room even though the arms did not move, and I was even able to enter and exit the lavatory without struggling to fit. Sorry if that’s too much info, but it’s a huge accomplishment in my world! I couldn’t have done it at this time last year!

When I took my seat I politely asked for a seat belt extension, and I received it in a not-so-discreet way. (But hey…I’ve made amazing progress so it didn’t bother me much.) After getting comfortable (yes, comfortable) in my seat I realized that the woman sitting next to me looked quite familiar. We figured out that we attended school together – small world. We chatted about our mutual friends, goals, where we live now, etc.

After chatting for a while my friend mentioned that she didn’t think I needed the seat belt extension. Though I knew I’d still need it for a few more months I decided to see how close it was, but guess what…it buckled! 🙂 There are no words to express the feelings of excitement and determination that charged through my body when I realized that I will not need to ask for an extension on the way home.

Yesterday’s flight was easily the best flight ever. I’m looking forward to several trips before the end of the year, and I feel as though a burden has been lifted.

Lessons learned:

  • When you think you’re leaving early enough to arrive at JFK, leave earlier. 😉
  • And on days in which you’re struggling stay focused on the fact that these seemingly small points of progress can turn into huge, life-changing successes.

The confidence I have in myself and my body’s abilities are growing as my body shrinks. I’m still learning to trust my legs to carry me, but there’s no way I’m willing to give up these feelings of self-satisfaction, accomplishment and pure happiness. It feels so good, and I know it’s only going to get better.

I hope everyone is enjoying this beautiful weekend. Today was an extraordinary day for me, but tomorrow is going to leave today and yesterday in the dust. I am so utterly thankful for the life I have and the people in it. Just saying.

100

I haven’t posted anything in a couple of days because I have big news, and I wanted to say something profound. But I’ve got nothing so I’m just going to say that I reached my 100 pound milestone, and it feels awesome! 🙂

(This is my WW 100 pound charm. Yay!)


My body has changed so much in the last 13 months, and I’m looking forward to the changes that will occur in the next 100 pounds. I still have a long road ahead, but it is no longer scary or overwhelming or seemingly impossible. I know I can do it because I’m almost half way there.

There’s no way I can fully express how incredible I feel now. All I can say is that if I had known how amazing I’d feel already I would have started sooner. It feels so good to reach such a monumental milestone. And I’m already moving forward to the next one.


I feel so blessed and so loved and completely determined. I am happier than I’ve ever been – ever. And I’m already working toward the next hundred. My life has changed, and I have Weight Watchers, the gym and my support network of friends and family (inside and outside of the blogosphere) to thank for that.

Losing the next 100 will bring me closer to my goal than I can even imagine at this point..I will not have to lose another 100 after this one. And I’m looking forward to it. So bring it next 100 pounds. I’m ready for it.

It’s Weigh-In Day and I’ve Come To Realize…

It’s Thursday again which means I’ll weigh-in later today. I’m excited because I did pretty well this week, but I’m always nervous because I hope the scale reflects that. So instead of focusing on what if, I’ll just wait for the results and do this fun little survey instead. Thank you Andrea, you are the queen of blog fun.

************

I’ve come to realize that my body works a lot better than I thought it did! It has been changing so much in the last year, and it’s going strong. 🙂


I’ve come to realize that when I’m driving I should not be text messaging or holding the phone to my ear or checking Facebook…or twitter…

I’ve come to realize that I need to workout 5-6 days per week to feel as good about myself as possible.

I’ve come to realize that I have lost a lot of weight! Seriously..it’s awesome. I can do this! 🙂

I’ve come to realize that I hate it when I don’t make a good impression.

I’ve come to realize that if I’m drunk I ‘love’ everyone around me. Ha.

I’ve come to realize that money
isn’t as important to me as it used to be, but I like it..a lot. And sometimes, I take it for granted.

I’ve come to realize that certain people are going to be memories and nothing more…

I’ve come to realize that I’ll always remember
what it felt like to be at my heaviest weight – sad and afraid that maybe I just couldn’t change…now I know I can because I am. Just saying.

I’ve come to realize that my sibling is a beautiful woman and a brilliant mother who is actually pretty fun to be around. 🙂 I’m sooooooooo excited that she and my niece will be visiting Mom when I visit. She got a job yesterday (yay!) that we thought would keep that from happening then it just worked out..so awesome.


I’ve come to realize that my mom is a worrier and a giver and the glue that binds our family.

I’ve come to realize that my cell phone is an addiction, and I’m oddly okay with that. Seriously, iPhone users, have you played Words with Friends? It’s awesome.

When I woke up this morning I realized that I still don’t feel 100%, but the sun is shining…and that makes me feel a little better.

Before bed last night I realized that I needed to take NyQuil so I did.

Right now I am thinking about the fact that I will not see Pearl Jam at Madison Square Garden tonight. And while my heart aches because of it, I know that if I really wanted to be there I would be. I’ve spent some time bouncing ideas around in my head as to why I’m not going, and I think I know the answer.

I’ve come to realize that my dad is wise, loving and hard working.

I’ve come to realize that when I get on Facebook I’m disappointed if I don’t have new notifications. What? Just keepin’ it real. 😉

I’ve come to realize that today is the day that I could maybe say that I’ve lost 100 pounds though I know it will most likely be next week instead.

I’ve come to realize that tonight will be an outstanding night with The Amish Outlaws and friends even though part of my heart will be at Madison Square Garden…


I’ve come to realize that tomorrow could be the day that I see Pearl Jam at MSG…they’re here two nights in a row. 😉

I’ve come to realize that I really want to win the hearts of other men and women who are similar journeys to change and become the person they want to be…:)

I’ve come to realize that life is about accepting who I am and loving myself without apology. I’m still working on that, but I’ve come a long, long way..:)

I’ve come to realize that this weekend will be a good one.

I’ve realized the best music to listen to when I am upset is Pearl Jam. I listen to them when I’m happy, sad, angry, in love, motivated, unmotivated, etc.

I’ve come to realize that my friends take me as I am – faults and all. 🙂 For the first time in my life I am surrounded by people who truly ‘get’ me…and I am thankful for this everyday.

I’ve come to realize that this year has been incredible so far. And I think there are more exciting things on the horizon.

I’ve come to realize that my husband is non-existent, but I know who he will be. And I think that might be part of the “exciting things on the horizon.” Just saying.

I’ve come to realize that maybe I should start scrapbooking more often. It’s a hobby that I love, but I don’t spend enough time doing it anymore. I did a little with girlfriends last week, but there’s so much that I want to do. I just need to get started! 🙂

I’ve come to realize that I love my niece more than life itself.

I’ve come to realize that I don’t understand how people can be so cruel and judgmental. But for every person out there like that, I meet many who are just the opposite.

I’ve come to realize my past is just that – past. It does not define who I am today unless I let it.

I’ve come to realize that parties are one of my favorite things. I love being with friends, presents and games.

I’ve come to realize that my life is better than I ever could have imagined. 🙂

Mind Over Matter

If I had known that I could enjoy the weight-loss process so much I would have started it much sooner. I think I had a lot of misconceptions about losing weight because I thought the only way to do it was to diet – to forsake every food I had ever enjoyed, replacing all of my regular hobbies with grueling exercise. Wow..I was so wrong!

It’s not easy every day, but I certainly do not live a life of depravity…not. even. close. I eat real foods that are healthy and filling, but I eat cheesecake sometimes (not often..just sometimes) too. Over the last year, I’ve learned how to balance my cravings with what I actually need, and I’ve even seen big changes in what I crave.


I don’t diet. I dislike the word immensely because I believe it sets people up to fail. I make good food choices most of the time. I eat healthy foods and journal what I’m eating (good or bad) so I know I’m consuming just enough to lose weight. Before I began losing weight I had no idea that eating enough was just as important as not eating too much.

And I actually enjoy exercise. Who knew that was possible?! I certainly did not. I don’t always enjoy lifting gigantic weights or doing squats until I puke, but at this point, it’s not necessary for me to do that on a daily basis (though some days I try.)

I do lift light weights, and I do squats and crunches and plank exercises. I also ride my bicycle, walk with friends or solo, dance to exercise videos that have a fun beat and I use a fitness stick to tone my arms. I mix up my workouts, and I do things that I enjoy. It’s much easier to stay motivated when you don’t hate what you’re about to do. I’ll never understand why people put themselves through that!

So, for me, this experience has actually been a fun one so far. Sure, there have been times (more than a few) in which I suffered through saying no to a Kit-Kat or a slice of pizza, but I don’t remember most of those instances. I do, however, remember how happy I feel each time I step on the scale and weigh less. I also remember the first shirt I bought off the rack at Old Navy and at Kohl’s. I remember the first time I jogged up a flight of stairs without feeling winded and the first time I could button one of my winter coats. I also remember the first time I could buckle the seat belt in the car without an extension and the first time I could use the table in front of me on an airplane. I also remember the feeling I got a few days ago when I put a belt through the loops of my jeans. (More on that later…that was a huge accomplishment!)


Weight-loss is not easy, but it’s also not as terrible as I thought it would be. I have learned that I can do so much more than I thought I could do with my body, my heart and my mind. I have ups and downs, but when you add it all up, you see one big success. I’ve said this before: I’m nowhere near my goal, but I already feel like a new person who possesses a bit of personal style, class and confidence. And while I certainly wish I could have felt this way sooner, I’ll just remain thankful that I feel it now.

One Year Ago Today

On this day, last year I walked into my first Weight Watchers meeting and faced the scale. It was not easy. In fact, standing on that scale for the first time was one of the hardest things I’ve done. But it was also one of the best things I’ve ever done.


One year and 92 pounds later, I am lighter on my feet. I walk faster. I take the stairs without getting winded. I jog. My hands and feet no longer swell up like balloons. I’m not stiff when I stand up. I eat apples because I think they taste good. I cook. I sleep like a stone instead of waking up several times per night.

I’ve made friends that I’ll keep for life. I’ve made my parents proud. I’m stronger. I’m a better sister, a better friend, a better colleague. I look in the mirror and feel proud of what I see…I could go on, but you get the idea, right? 😉


There’s still a long road ahead, but I love the direction I’m headed. I’ve come so far! And I’ve gained so much more in other areas of life than I could have imagined before my first Weight Watchers meeting. I’m happier than I’ve ever been. I am confident that I can do things that seem impossible because that’s precisely what I’m doing.


Maybe some of you can do this alone, but I’m so thankful that I don’t have to. I love my support network of family and friends. The men and women in my Thursday night WW group have been an integral part of my success. They are with me every week through thick and thin. I love healthy foods (most of the time.) I love exercise and the feelings I get when I’ve just pushed myself to a new level.

I’ve said it before, but I’m saying it again – I love being the person I want to be instead of the person I allowed myself to become.

Now on to Year Two…

Thank Goodness It’s Monday…What?!

This weekend was a bust. Thankfully, there was no snow, but it started raining Friday evening and has not stopped yet. The winds were sustained at about 40 mph with gusts up to 70 mph. When I moved to the Northeast I thought I’d be leaving the weather like this behind…

We lost power Saturday afternoon. I spent the day shopping before going to dinner with Boyfriend and his parents so he let me know that the power was off. Booo…It wasn’t as cold as it had been a few weeks ago when the snow storm knocked the power out, but it was still chilly. And let’s just say that I didn’t like the idea of sleeping without heat again.

Actually, I was a total killjoy. I hated the inconvenience of sleeping without heat or relocating to Boyfriend’s childhood home. Though we are completely welcome there, it’s just not the same as home. And I hated to intrude on them when there was already so much going on in their home. But we went today, planning to spend the night, and power was restored..yay!

Power has been out all over the New York City area all weekend. A friend in Brooklyn said that mot of his neighborhood was destroyed. Another friend who has two small children had several inches of water in her home so in hindsight, we were pretty lucky.

But that didn’t keep me from being completely cranky and unreasonable. I did manage to exercise this weekend which makes me feel a little proud of myself. Yesterday I rode my recumbent bike. Today was more challenging. The power was out at the gym so I went to the office gym to workout there. I had planned to use the treadmill, but the power was out there too.

I didn’t want to leave without working out so I decided to try the elliptical machine which felt impossibly hard last time I tried it – over a year ago. And I wasn’t sure that I’d be able to do it today, but I did. It wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t nearly as tough I remembered it being! Yay! I felt proud of myself when I finished because 1) I used the elliptical machine and 2) I did it in the dark.

It was cold and rainy outside so it would have been easy to say “Oh well, the power is out. I guess I can’t exercise today.” But I knew I needed to get my heart pumping and I did. It’s proof that I’m changing, and it feels good.

So while the day was crappy (mostly because I was cranky and dramatic) at least I did something good for myself and my body today. I ate reasonably and exercised. I also went the supermarket to pick up fresh produce. And when I came home I was so thrilled to have electricity that I cleaned out my kitchen cabinets, loaded the dishwasher with dishes that didn’t make it in before the power outage, cleaned the stove and counters and started the laundry.

We leave for Aruba on Wednesday, and I can’t wait. It was a rough weekend, but I think a luxurious beach vacation with the man I love is just the thing to make it forget it. 😉

How was your weekend? Did you accomplish anything? Enjoy anything?