4:30 a.m.- The hardest thing I did today was not hit the snooze button

So this morning, I woke up to my alarm at 4:30 so I could get up and jog/walk on my treadmill. This is not easy and it is not fun.

However, if I am going to continue to lose weight to get down to my goal weight, I have to keep it up.

I have grown to really love my ipod nano (my husband got it for me last year for Christmas) in aid of helping me work out. I used it sparingly and this morning I was really grateful for the fact that I had it to use while jogging 30 seconds, walking 30 seconds. Let me say that again, I ran 30 seconds and walked 30 seconds. I was very grateful that I have the soundtrack to “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert” on my ipod to run/walk to… There is nothing like disco to get the heart pumping.

I did intervals, a new term I am learning thanks to my coach Cole Butler and the online program


I will say the intervals make it easier for the time to go by but its no less hard. However, I have to compare it to something Jon Acuff said.
When someone questions what you are doing or attempting to do: “Have you ever run a 5K, Jennifer?”

Answer with a smile and say something like this, “No, but I am about to.” Added silently. “Watch me!”

So while I am tired, I am far more alert than I would have been if I had not worked out today and am eager to start the day.

It helps that I lost 2 more pounds (13 to go!!!) but I would not be deterred if I had not, because this is not a diet, this is a lifestyle choice to be healthier. I have said that before but not really meant it. This time I do.

one workout, one step, one pound

Happy New Year Everyone! I think that as a culture we focus way too much on New Year’s resolutions. I gave a speech last year that focused heavily on “new month” resolutions but I think that it is far more important to make life resolutions. Here are mine

1. Speak with an honest heart and an intent to help

2. Value and cherish my body

3. Realize that everyone makes mistakes and everyone is struggling so to always be kind

4. Really enjoy the moments of life and don’t “wait” to do something or “save” an outfit for a special occasion.

Case in point, I worked out today and while it was difficult and unpleasant it yielded the loss of one pound. I could get discouraged by that but I am not. I am working hard to lose the last 15 pound to make it to my goal in 18 days of 235 pounds. The good thing about that is that once I have accomplished it, I will know that I can and will eventually get down to 175 which is my ideal (medically stated for my height and weight) 

It takes one step at a time, one mile at a time and it’s all working towards the goal of better health in the years to come so the baby steps I take today ( pun intended) will lead me to a longer, healthier life where I don’t get out of breath running up a flight of stairs and I can and will run a 5K. I am not there yet, ( on the slow jog part, but I will get there ).

What have you always wanted to do but haven’t done yet? What steps are you taking to get there?

Biting off more than you can chew…..

Biting off more than you can chew.....

Okay readers, so I have a confession. Sometimes I get SO excited about what I THINK I can do, I forget to check out all the factors and then realize I have bitten off more than I can chew. If you are unfamiliar with the phrase, maybe a visual will help.

I signed up to do a 13 mile marathon at the end of March, on the strength of two slowly walked 5K’s three months apart. In talking to a few people (you know who you are) I realized this was not only ambitious, it bordered on dangerous. (with apologies to Mr. Izzard) “You’re British, so scale it down a bit”

It is embarrassing to admit this and have to walk back my goal, but here goes. I have signed up to RUN a 5K by mid March. Intermediate goals include, working out two – three times a week. Doing a slow jog for the first half of the 5K on 1/18/2014 and doing intermediate training with a personal trainer including using the tips from Couch to 5K.

I think its important to shoot for the moon and if you fall short of your goal, you wind up among the stars.. but never forget to pack your spacesuit or your oxygen.

I think sometimes in the rush to get things done, we forget that each goal we set has intermediate goals and its just as important to build a foundation of baby steps which then lead you to a larger milestone. If this is obvious to you, congratulations, you are ahead of me.
If it is not, then take a minute and look at that picture again.

Think about it….

A Black Friday Christmas present for me….

A Black Friday Christmas present for me....

I made my final payment to my last credit card ever today. I find it ironic that while millions of shoppers all over the world were sliding the plastic through machines to increase their debt, we actually finished paying off a credit card today.

See this picture? It represents a very happy lady. A year ago, my husband and I made a commitment to get out of debt and budget and work together to meet our financial goals. We are not done yet, but today we took a very big step towards that goal.
I am very excited and impatient to get there.

But as with so many other things, it is always important to take stock and pat yourself on the back when you do something good. That’s what this picture is about. My husband dislikes that I take pictures all the time but I have tried to explain to him that its important to record things. I will admit I do go overboard from time to time but I think that I am learning more balance. I truly try to take pictures with my heart about half the time and then with a camera the rest. But I knew this moment had to be captured!

So this is the Black Friday present I gave to us. We are now credit card debt-free. Typing that is pretty exciting and it gets even more exciting when I think of all the changes we have walked together through. Getting on the same page about our money has really helped us to see how many things we can do with less. Giving up cable, (we don’t miss it and netflix is a great option) we read more books. Not going out to eat every night, my cooking skills are getting better. So I wanted to take a moment and pat us on the back for that which we have done to keep us on track to goal. Affirmation is a big part of what keeps me going! So a big Buccaneer cheer for the Hastons!!!

It’s just one piece of candy…..

Dear Readers, about a week ago I posted about giving myself grace and getting back to the healthy paleo lifestyle we adopted almost eleven months ago. Just yesterday, as it was Halloween and candy (free candy to be precise) is flying everywhere so I was very tempted to eat it but I realized that just eating one piece would lead to another and then another and then before you know it the whole bag is gone and then you have justified it because its Halloween or its just one day. Well, I submit to you that you can stop the insanity by just saying no and more importantly focusing on why you aren’t eating the candy but are eating other healthy foods in its place. It started out by eliminating soda, not as hard as I thought. Then came chocolate and let me tell you, this girl has never met a chocolate she did not like save dark chocolate.

Part of the thing that appeals to us about this lifestyle choice is not just weight loss but the amazing amounts of energy gained by eating such healthy foods. The other thing that appeals to us is that one day a week, you are allowed to “cheat” .. as previously mentioned this has been more of a daily than a weekly deal for us. I am seeking to change that and over the last two weeks we have done better but are not back to once a week which is the goal. 

For more on paleo and our results. https://jenniferhastonsays.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/this-is-me-in-june-of-this-year-2013/

So yesterday, when given the chance to eat chocolate and other goodies I didn’t eat them. I thought about it and then realized my healthy living is more important than my immediate and instant gratification of the tasty morsel in my hand. I have had these thoughts before but yesterday I signed up to do a photo shoot for my upcoming 37th birthday and I want to look the best I have ever looked in those upcoming pictures, so now I have “thrown my hat over the wall” I have to do it and yesterday I did eat pizza but I did not eat candy. I am also walking in a 5K on November 16th so will need to be adding exercise back in.

Today, I avoided the free pastry and bagel at work, and I actually feel good about it. I know that I can keep it up if I keep thinking of myself svelte and healthy. The picture I want is the picture I am working toward making possible. Baby steps, baby steps, a little tweak WILL lead to tremendous results over time. Think about it!

I am wrong!

Hard words to say but there it is in black and white.

I set about accomplishing several goals this year. 

1. Read 10 books – On #5 and #6 right now

2. Spending more time with friends, less on Facebook. Check

3. Lose 50 pounds. I have lost 40.

4. Give 10 effective speeches. I have given 6. 

4. Get more sleep aka stop snoozing

I have made zero progress on this goal until today. I have been trying to decipher why I needed to get more sleep “just five more minutes” because the goals above are not easy and with modesty, I am getting them done, no problem, even shouted a healthy, Jed Bartlettesque “What’s next?” to those goals but the sleep thing was really stumping me. I turned to the internet for answers including twitter and facebook and finally realized. 

It is like everything else on my list, it requires intention and discipline so I am proud to say I woke up today and did not snooze and as a result had time to do dishes, make breakfast and write a blog post. Definitely a successful morning already which sets me up to have a great day.

So I hereby declare to my husband and certain others who have been chorusing for years, you were right and I was wrong. I choose not to snooze. Today. and Tomorrow. So it might take a bit to form a habit but that is okay too, I plan to give myself some grace and work on it each day. That’s how I am working on everything else. 

What are you working on? What are your stumbling blocks? Can I help?

Email me at jennifermckennasays@gmail.com and let’s chat about it!