Operation Skinny Jeans: July 2014

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Now what am I going to eat?

As excited as I am to have wrapped up the "No Plan" meal plan series, I am feeling a little lost today. For the last 20 weeks, my Thursday posts have been predictable and I kinda liked that. And more than that- It's Thursday and I don't have a meal plan ready for next week! What am I going to eat?

I think this is a question I have struggled with for a long time. When you have an eating disorder, you become obsessed with food. It controls your thoughts and your days, and really, your life. Part of controlling it is being very methodical with your food, having it planned out and easy to follow, something I LOVED about the NPMP. But here I am, now wondering what I am going to eat!

I have talked about different diets a lot on this blog, I have tried pretty much everything. I have tried restricting, I have tried moderation. I have tried low carb, I have tried Weight Watchers, and everything in between. I was going to try Whole 30 but then the day I was going to start, I had to have emergency wisdom tooth surgery that threw a wrench in that plan.

So do I attempt Whole 30 again? Do I try something different? I have been researching paleo for a while, do I take the leap and just try it? Do I even need to follow a specific "diet", or can I just keep practicing 80/20 clean eating?

And if I do decide, do I have to tell you all about it? I feel like I start a lot of things (like whole 30) and never finish them (for whatever reason) when it would just be easier to try something, see if it works, and tell you about it later.

The truth is- there are so many different ways to fuel our bodies, and not every one is right for everyone. My ultimate goal with food is to just eat. To find food I enjoy that is good for me, and to not have to think about it day in day out. The last 20 weeks were great because I had dinners figured out! And since Ginny and I collaborated, about half of the recipes were new to me! What I eat is pretty boring. We have the same 10 recipes we recycle over and over, so thinking outside the box, and getting new recipes was really awesome.

So I guess the answer to my question is "who knows". But I am curious- what do you eat? Do you follow a specific diet? Do you like it? What do you like about it? Please tell me I am not the only one who thinks about food this much lol.
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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

How I keep myself accountable

I have said it before (and I will say it again) accountability is key! For real. Until you have mastered consistency, there is going to be a time (maybe lots of them) that make you want to stray from the plan. Having someone (or something) keeping you accountable will make staying on plan a lot easier.

But when you have no one, how do you find someone? That's a great question. Thankfully the internet is an awesome place, and trainers exist. Here are my favorite accountability tools, and hopefully one works for you!

1. A friend. I totally understand not everyone has one of these, so find one! I would be willing to bet the rec center in your town has group workout classes for cheap. I would be willing to bet someone in that class is just like you, looking for someone to become "workout buddies" with. Or maybe there is a meet up group (or 700) for people that share a common goal. Or a local pub has a running club where everyone runs a 5K then drinks beer. I don't live in a huge city and ALL of those are things available to me. Find out what is available to you. If you workout at a gym, having a physical friend to go with can often be the difference between success and that other thing.

2. Instagram. Fun fact- I created my instagram account to stay accountable to wearing and using my body bugg. It's true- if you are bored you can scroll ALL the way down and see for weeks all I did was post my body bugg screen shot. And I would hashtag #bodybugg and #bodymedia and I would follow other people using it. We became a little community. I still follow those people I met early on, and we are STILL friends. Instagram is an awesome tool, not just a place to stalk your favorite bloggers and celebs (tho I do that too ;) )

3. Diet Bets. I have been doing Diet Bets since I started this journey and I have to say I freaking love them. First of all, anyone can commit to 4 weeks. And 4% is such an attainable goal, everyone can do it. Second, I am competitive. When I have the chance to win money, I am motivated to do my best. I love that Diet Bets you aren't competing against other people, you are betting on yourself, and working to prove you can do it. My Labor Day Diet Bet starts today and the pot is over $1000 if you want to give it a shot.

4. Apps. There are TONS of weight loss/ fitness apps out there, and 99% of them are free. Some of my favorites are My Fitness Pal, C25K Free, Map My Fitness, Breeze and Weilos. I am still trying to figure out Weilos, but from what I can tell its like a fitness only instagram. I am also a HUGE fan of Rip Deck. I have talked about Rip Deck before, but I still use it when I am in a pinch. Its just a great app (but not a free one, but worth the money). (Obviously none of these apps know who I am, I just use them and thought I would share, in case that was unclear.)

5. Hire a trainer. This is #5 because its not free, and not the best way to go for some people. I 100% believe you can lose weight without a trainer. You have it inside you to change your life. And you don't need to become a power lifter or marathon runner to do it. If these are your goals, seeking professional help is totally advised, but not necessary. If you think having a personal trainer will help you, PLEASE go get a trainer. We are all on a different journey, and trainers are there to help.

I have used (or continue to use) each of these methods of accountability every day. I have accountabilibuddies, I have worked with a trainer, I use at least half of those apps every day. To be successful, you need to commit, and to commit you need to be consistent, and to be consistent, you need accountability. Pick one, or use all until you find what works for you.

What is your favorite accountability tool?
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Monday, July 28, 2014

Getting Started on your Fitness Journey (for real this time)

The number one question I get asked all the time is how did you get started.

I "started" a million times. I "started" every Monday for 4 years, vowing every Friday that MONDAY will be the start of my NEW lifestyle. I was going to eat healthy. I was going to workout. And I was going to STOP binging. I said this a MILLION times. And every weekend I would have a "Last Hurrah", eating all the foods I couldn't eat on my "new plan" and vow to start fresh on Monday. Monday would come, and I would be so full of shame and self loathing about my weekend long bingefest, that I would starve myself. I would go on a 2 day "water fast" to "flush" my system of toxins, and start off on the right foot! Only to binge out of starvation by the end of day 2, which lead to the weekly proclamation on Friday.

This was my cycle.

So when people ask me "how I started" I assume they are really asking "how did you break the cycle" and that is what I want to share. These are my 5 tips to break the cycle and get started (for real this time).

1. Start today. Not Monday, not after your vacation, not tomorrow, today. Right now. Putting it off will only make you over think and probably binge, and ultimately put it off to next week or some other time.

2. Start small. Put down the Diet Coke. I know, I know. Just do it. Dump it down the drain and throw out the rest. Grab a glass of water, and drink another one. Drink a couple more every day. And instead of running through the drive through at lunch, pack something. Anything. Make sure it has green in it.

3. Go for a walk. Take your dog, or your kids. Go around the block. Tomorrow, circle around twice. Go further. Go faster. Push yourself a little more every day. Maybe in a little while, try jogging. Your body can do it. It's your head you have to convince. Go every day. Make it a part of your routine.

4. Grab a friend. Accountability is key. If you think back to all the times you tried (and failed), what were you missing? Accountability. Someone to hold you to what you said you were going to do, way after you said you were going to do it. Everything is more fun with a friend. You can go on walks together, meal plan together, struggle together and celebrate together. If you have no one in your life that can be your an accountabilibuddy- the internet is your friend. I have made some of my best friends on the internet, and I what it's like to feel like you have no support. You do. You might just need to look outside of your circle of friends.

5. Commit. For real. Be real. You know when you said it all those other times that you weren't for real. You knew in the back of your head that quitting was an option and that you didn't ACTUALLY have to follow through. Stop that. Tell that voice, the one holding you back, to shut up. You CAN succeed. You CAN change your life. It isn't hard, you just have to STOP QUITTING. Stop living or dying by the wagon. The wagon doesn't exist. There are only you are your choices. If you make a bad one, make a better one next time! Stop quitting because you made a bad choice. When you commit, and I mean REALLY commit, you can do incredible things. You don't have to go Beast Mode (in fact, I don't really recommend it) you just have to try your best. Give it your all. You have the power to make a change. Just commit.

And that's it.

If you struggling with motivation, dig deep. Only you can motivate yourself. You have to believe, and you have to commit. Once you do that, and you do that every day, you will succeed.

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Friday, July 25, 2014

New Goals

So. I have been thinking a lot about where this year has been, and where I would like to go. And since at the beginning of the year I set obscene, unachievable goals, and I have now renounced them, I figured today would be a good time to set some new goals.

I worked out this morning and gave it 100%, something I haven't honestly done in too long. I don't know if it was the workout, or the relief of getting the half marathon off my shoulders, or what, but I hope it continues. It will continue. I am in control.

So my goals going forward are.

1. Workout more days a week than I don't.
2. Eat stuff that makes me feel good.
3. Weigh less at the end of the month than when I started.
4. ONLY weigh once a month, on the 1st. I get obsessive about this number.
5. Run some. Don't let your mind talk you into walking, you aren't going to die.

That's it.

I want to focus on just BEING healthier. I don't need to strive to compete in a bikini competition or to run a marathon right now. I just need to focus on being a healthier, more active me. And I need to be okay with that. THAT might be the hardest part.

So here is to a new goal. Health.

Changing the mantra on my phone too.

Happy Friday :D

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Thursday, July 24, 2014

Lets be honest.

I was going to save this for Monday, because of the whole "marathon monday" thing, but I need to say it now. Its been weighing heavily on me for weeks.

I am a quitter.


I have been a quitter my whole life. I have always been held to (or held my self to) ridiculously high expectations and the second I start to see success, I quit.

But that doesn't make sense...

Except it does. Here's why.

I have a paralyzing fear of failure. Growing up, failure wasn't an option. I felt degraded because I wasn't a straight A student. I wasn't in the marching band so I was less. But I never wanted to fail. I tried SO HARD not to fail, and any time I would start to actually do WELL instead of AVERAGE, I would clam up and quit.

Quitting is in my control. Success is too risky. If I reach for success, and I step off of the mediocrity platform of safety, I could fall, and thats what I am afraid of. But instead if I just stay on that platform, and never do anything spectacular or ever succeed, I will be okay.

I have pulled out of my half marathon.

Lets be real honest, after I pulled out of the Rocky Mountain Half, I never actually registered for the Georgetown to Idaho Springs one.

I tell myself its because my partner got pregnant and couldn't run it with me for medical reasons. I tell myself that its because my other friend had to bow out for personal reason. Thats what I tell myself.

The truth is, I quit. I quit a LONG time ago. I quit in April.

There is a lot of pressure as a blogger. I feel like if I promise something, I can't back down. Even something as crazy as running a freaking half marathon. I, again, hold myself to this ridiculously high standard, and as soon as I get toward the edge of the mediocrity platform, I bail. I binge. I quit running (I was doing well in the beginning!) and I hide in my shell of safety.

I am a coward.

So. Yeah. I am not running a half marathon in 3 weeks. Or probably not even in 3 months. Maybe not even in 3 years. I need to learn to walk (figuratively, I know how to walk) before I can run.

A friend of mine is doing a 7K at the end of August. I am going to start there. I have walk/run (intervals) further than that, so I KNOW this is something I can finish. I need to focus on setting goals I can actually attain. And not succumb to the pressure of the blogging world where everyone is running a half marathon so I should too.

I am not everyone.

I am just me.

One year ago I ran an entire mile for the first time in my life. Straight. Without stopping. I have only done that 5 times since then because I bail. I freak out and even tho I can breathe and my legs aren't falling off, I get close and I bail.

I have a lot of figuring out to do. I know that quitting as a defense mechanism isn't healthy. I know that. But its what I do.

If you don't respect me or think less of me because of this, go ahead. I am sorry to disappoint you. But I need to do this for me.

And lets be real honest- you had to see this coming! I posted like 3 weeks ago about how I wasn't training. Its not like this is a shock to anyone. I have been nothing if not honest about my struggle- with my weight loss and gain this year, with this half marathon and with my self doubt and eating disorder. I really believe this looming goal has been the root of all of it.

I am going back to small goals. I need to feel baby tiny successes so maybe it won't scare the crap out of me anymore.

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"No Plan Meal Plan" Week 20- Vegetarian week!

I am sad and a little excited to say this is the end of an era. These meal plans have been so much fun to make with Ginny, and I will miss hanging out with her over the internet every week to make them.

But in the last 20 weeks, we have given you over 100 recipes, and all of the meal plans can be found here :D So without further ado, the final No Plan Meal Plan- Vegetarian Week.

Here's the way it works.  

1. No more than 20 ingredients ever. I like simple things, and if a recipe has more than 7 ingredients, I am not gonna make it. I think you are all like me, and like simple, budget friendly dinners, so here they are. 

2. 5 dinner recipes, ready to go. Does your family have Pizza Fridays? Or do you always go out to eat on Wednesdays? Cool! 5 dinners allows for flexability, and since they aren't assigned to days, you can always eat what you WANT, not what you wrote down 2 weeks ago :D

3. 4 cook time options. Have to go to basketball practice at 6? No problem! There are dinner options for 10 minutes, 30 minutes, an hour and all day with the crock pot.

4. 3 healthy food groups.  Nutrition is important, and so is eating a balanced meal. All of our dinner recipes will include a Protein, a Vegetable and a Grain. Simple nutrition for you and your family.

5. 2 servings. I am a family of 2, so I don't need more than 2 servings. You have a family of 4? Cool bro- double it. Serving 8? Do the math :D Having the recipes serve 2 allows for easy modification for whatever you need :D

6. Just one easy prep time. The days of slaving away in the kitchen for hours a night are OVER! Once a week you will spend about an hour, maybe less prepping for the week. The prep guide is ON the menu plan, so it literally is EASY PEASY.

Just a few more notes:
  • Don't like chicken? Me either. There are substitutions listed for most recipes. :D
  • Don't like ____? Me either (kidding, I like ___) The optional ingredients are listed. Adjust accordingly :D
  • Each meal plan will be posted on Thursday, give you Friday and the weekend for shopping and prep. 
  • Each week you only have to print out ONE THING! It's all there on the one sheet of paper. You are welcome :D

Think your recipe for ____ is awesome and want it to be featured? Submit it here

Get the "No Plan" Meal Plan in your inbox every week!

* indicates required

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

I've got 99 problems

and my love of shoes and bags count for like 56 of them.

The good news is, I am a budget minded person so that stops me from buying ALL the shoes and bags I want, but that doesn't stop me from lusting over them here.

For a long time I was lusting over the Nike Studio Wraps, but after saving up, I made those babies mine :D And I have to say I love them. And sure, it seems silly to save up for $40 shoes (it took 2 months), but its how I justify buying things that I don't REALLY need. Like shoes and bags. :D

These babies are next on my saving list. I tried them on, jogged around the store, and they feel awesome. 

Nike Air Relentless

I also have been lusting over a nice pair of flats. I have two flats right now, and I got both of them from payless over 2 years ago. I still love them, and wear them often, but it might be time for some new kids on the block. These from Modcloth will do nicely :D

And who doesn't need a pair of bright royal blue wedges. I know I do. Ok need might be a strong word. Can I even walk in wedges? Who cares. (again, Modcloth)

And now for bags. mmmmm. I have it BAD for bags! If I could have a different purse for every day of the week, I would be in purse HEAVEN! Fun fact: I have never owned a designer purse! Being frugal, they never seemed practical. But fuck practical they are SO PRETTY. I am in love with a lot of purses right now. 

This Betsey Johnson bag that you can find at Modcloth (among other places).  (I just realized this kinda sounds like a sponsored post from modcloth lol oops! Its not. I just discovered that they had pretty bags and shoes so I have been spending a lot of time on their website drooling. But believe me, they have no clue who I am, and care even less what I think of their accessory department :D )

My friend Sonya showed me this bag from The Buckle yesterday and I think I am in love! 
Ok I am in a green phase. 

And I am DYING for these gorgeous leather Coach bags right now. I don't even care what color. 

I'll take one of each ;) I don't normally like Coach bags because I don't like the C pattern on them. But these leather bags are gorgeous. 

I can't even think of how many months I would have to save to get one of these babies. A lot. Like maybe by my NEXT birthday, September 2015.

Oh well- a girl can dream, right? Do you lust over pretty things you can't have? Or are you an impulse buyer and just buy what you want? 
Oh hey btw! Totally off topic, but I have another Diet Bet starting next week if you wanna get fit by Labor Day! 

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

SO I got this skirt!

You may or may not know this about me, but I am kind of a nerd. You probably could have guessed that, but whatever. Anyhoo- I hosted a Harry Potter theme quiz this weekend and I decided to dress up in a traditional school uniform. But I was missing one essential thing- a pleated skirt. I have never been able to find a cute skirt that fit right, but also could be worn again.

I am cheap. I can't spend money on a piece of clothing I will only wear once. So when I decided to go on the hunt- I knew it needed to be cute, and also cheap. That pretty much narrowed it down to one place- Forever 21.

I am happy with how far Forever 21's plus department has come over the years, and I am SO LUCKY to have a really extensive section at the store closest to me so I can try things on. So I decided to chance it and run over there. They often times have different stuff than they do online (I am guessing old stuff? ) so its best to see what they have. That's when I found this beauty.

Ok "this beauty" is specific- the skirt isn't on their website but it looks like it could have been this one? I don't really know lol. Thats what I used on Polyvore to make these outfits (or one of them apparently lol I wasn't paying that good of attention.)

Except I paid $11 for it, but whatever. Anyhoo- I was in there and saw this skirt, they only had one and it was my size so obviously it was meant to be. Its a good line and I am excited to have a versatile skirt! But I have never really worn a high waisted skirt, or tried to style one so this is kinda trial by fire. 


I think I am going to try to recreate this at my next photoshoot. I obviously don't have that GORGEOUS Coach bag (wish I did) but I have pink flats and a white t-shirt.

I also dabbled with the idea of a cheeky crop top? They are really in right now, and I think the line of this skirt would compliment it.


I have had my eye on that Mean Girls crop top since the day I saw it. OH and I have those shoes and they definitely didn't cost what Polyvore said they do haha. And again- I want all the Coach bags. All of them. 
And with this one, I went with something I would wear on a date night. And per the above, I am dying for that Betsy Johnson bag. Come to mama. 

So there you have it. A few looks with my new skirt. I can't wait to see this piece become a staple for me :D Fun fact- it's my first skirt lol. #wardrobefail

Which one is your favorite?
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