Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Halloween & Hallelujahs

Another Halloween has come and gone.  Many parents seize this opportunity to devour endless amounts of free candy.  Having six children this year, one would think that meant I'd have an endless candy buffet.

But, alas, dear sojourner, I abstained.

Yes, you read that correctly.  I did not limit myself to five or ten pieces.  Instead, I stood fast in my commitment to get back on the healthy bandwagon, and I had not one piece of Halloween candy.  I'm not bragging.  I'm making a "hallelujah" statement!  As in "HALLELUJAH!  I don't have to start over.... again!"  NO regrets!  NO setbacks.  First. Time. Ever.

I doubt I would have been so successful, except I'd already started down the clean-eating trail and by the time Halloween rolled around, I had no desire for Halloween candy.  Seriously.    I enjoyed meeting new neighbors and visiting with neighbors I already knew.  I loved watching my kids run up and down the street with neighbor friends while I snuggled my six month old princess in our driveway.

And when I woke up on Saturday, I didn't have a tummy ache.  I didn't have a sugar hangover, or a mountain of regrets, fueled by a night of extreme gluttony.  When I woke up on Saturday, I felt rejuvenated, excited, energized, and ready to press onward.

And then I got on the scale.


I couldn't believe it when I saw it, but I'm down almost ten pounds.  Yes.  Ten.  My first numbers goal!!  So now suddenly, staying on this path doesn't seem so impossible any more.

Because of the way I am built, one might not be able to tell just by looking at me, but my scale isn't lying.  Those few weeks of hard work and wise choices are really starting to pay off.  If this continues, I'll reach my long term goals in no time!

Am I sharing this to brag?  No!  Not at all.  I just wanted to take a moment to say- hey friend!  I'm doing it!  I'm really doing it!  And you can, too!  So you ate your child's entire bucket of Halloween candy... so start over.  No excuses, remember?

I'm in this... with you.  Start again today, right now.  Don't wait until Monday, or even tomorrow.  Start now.
You can do this, and I'm here to walk with you, one step at a time.

Until next time,

The Fat Girl, Slim.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

TRANSFORMED (a revisit from years past)

I was re-reading some of my older posts for motivation and I came across this one.


And I was so inspired...

I hope you will be inspired, too!

Take some time, read through some of these old posts.  I'm re-learning a lot of this and I hope it will help inspire, inform, or encourage you in some way.

Here are a few more to help get your started:


BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTOS (Round one- there will be new before and after photos this time... better than before)

And this classic


See you on the journey!

Survival Mode

It occurred to me the other day, that you may have thought I reached my goals and abandoned you.  Alas, dear friend, this is not the case.  I've been absent from writing for the past year and a half because during the course of my ongoing transformation, well....  we had another baby.

Meet Kennedy Noelle.

She's officially our last baby- number 6 of 6.  She's not only completely healthy, but also completely wonderful.

However, getting her to this point took a major toll on my body.  Between an extremely difficult pregnancy and compounded stress, I have spent most of the last year and a half in what I like to call "survival mode".

Survival mode is where you do whatever it takes to stay alive- like eating things you normally wouldn't eat, and laying around for almost nine months because of overwhelming nausea... the entire pregnancy.  I HATE survival mode.  I DESPISE the thought of having to go through the transformation all over again.

But, here we are.  Almost 100 pounds heavier than when I last wrote, and supremely uncomfortable.

I realized, the other day, that I've become a hermit.  Seriously.  I LOVE to be around people, but I'm embarrassed and ashamed of what I allowed to happen to my body- so I realized that I'm hiding.  I guess I feel like it's safe here... in my house.  No one can judge me.  No one can see the damage I'm doing to my body.  No one can criticize me for my sin- this gluttony that I'm wrestling with.

You see- that precious angel didn't do this to me.  The FIFTH C-Section didn't do it to me.  I did this to me.  Yes, I was in survival mode during pregnancy, and even for a while after.  Yes, I had to eat whatever I could to function and to keep baby healthy and growing.  But I took it too far.  I ate well beyond my natural limits.  I pushed myself, often finding comfort in food.  Postpartum has been rough this time, and as depression tried to creep in, I felt out of control, and tried to manipulate a false sense of security by gorging myself.

So when I got on the scale the other day and realized I'm still at the same weight as the day I delivered her... pre-surgery, I realized it's time to change.  I cannot live like this any more.  I owe it to all of my kids, and to my self to get my health back.  I don't want them to watch me die a slow death, brought on by health problems linked to morbid obesity.

I want to live- to really live.  I want to run and play with them again.  I want to jump on the trampoline and swim with them, without being worried about breaking the diving board or ruining the trampoline.  I want to watch them walk across the stage at graduation and down the aisle at each of their weddings and not be hiding beneath layers of well-dressed fat.  I want to set a good example, leaving a legacy, not just for my children, but for generations to follow.

So, friends, I'm back on track, and I hope you are, too.

Looking forward to journeying with you,

The Fat Girl,


Monday, June 3, 2013


My kids are not "veggie freaks"...  just, FYI.

Before listening to Whitney Zaino teach on healthy living, I really hadn't been exposed to helpful information that seemed legit and "do-able" that would also benefit my entire family.  Because of this, I always bought things that were quick, easy, and cheap- like Pop-Tarts, Microwaveable Foods, Hot Dogs, Lunchables, and anything else that required minimal efforts.  I did just enough to get by, but never wanted to force them to eat veggies... because I didn't like veggies.

Until now.

I also learned, during the course of all of this re-training of my brain, that it's not all about eating veggies.  There are some other major players in the healthy living game.  Let's see what Whitney has to say about this stuff:

"What is best for you and your family to prevent and reverse disease and illness is to follow the Three Healthy Principles of Abundant Nutrition. They are broken down by food group: fats, protein, and carbohydrates. 

Healthy fats vs. damaged fats:
Eat more healthy fats: eliminate all damaged fats 
Naturally raised vs. unnaturally raised animals:
Go organic and natural for animals because these are at the top of the food chain 
Whole Carbohydrates vs. refined carbohydrates
Eat more vegetables-eliminate refined grains and sugars. 

Seriously, folks- it's really that simple... and that complicated.

Say wha???

I'll break down each of these three categories to help you try to understand:

1.  FAT.  Seriously.  You have to eat fat to lose fat.  But not only that, you have to eat fat (the right kind of fat) to function the way you were intended to.  See below from Whitney:

The number one missing ingredient in the standard North American diet is not a vitamin or mineral but good fat. Good fats are essential to brain development, cellular healing, anti-inflammation, absorbing vitamins, cushioning vital organs, increased awareness and learning abilities, increases heart health, focus and concentration.
  • FACT:About 70% of your brain is fat.
    • FACT:Fats play an important role in brain function, building cell membranes, clotting blood, absorbing vitamins, cushioning vital organs and protecting us from extreme temperatures.
    • FACT:Eating fat does not make you fat.
    • FACT:Americans eat more non-fat foods than people in any other country, yet our population is the fattest in the world.
    • FACT:From 1970-2000 grain and sugar consumption increased significantly, but not total fat consumption. However, during that period, the consumption of trans fats increased.
    • FACT:It is not the amount of fat that we eat that matters, but the type of fat.
    • FACT:Trans fats are the link to heart disease and cancer -- not saturated fats.
    • FACT:The good saturated fats are very healthy and can be consumed daily.
    • FACT:Coconut oil is loaded with saturated fat and is one of the healthiest foods on earth.
    • FACT:Grass-fed meat and free-range poultry have the good fats in the right ratios, unlike store bought meats.
    • FACT:About 70% of your brain is fat.
    • FACT:Fats play an important role in brain function, building cell membranes, clotting blood, absorbing vitamins, cushioning vital organs and protecting us from extreme temperatures.
    • FACT:Eating fat does not make you fat.
    • FACT:Americans eat more non-fat foods than people in any other country, yet our population is the fattest in the world.
    • FACT:From 1970-2000 grain and sugar consumption increased significantly, but not total fat consumption. However, during that period, the consumption of trans fats increased.
    • FACT:It is not the amount of fat that we eat that matters, but the type of fat.
    • FACT:Trans fats are the link to heart disease and cancer -- not saturated fats.
    • FACT:The good saturated fats are very healthy and can be consumed daily.
    • FACT:Coconut oil is loaded with saturated fat and is one of the healthiest foods on earth.
    • FACT:Grass-fed meat and free-range poultry have the good fats in the right ratios, unlike store bought meat
Healthy fats (undamaged saturated fat)make up 70% of your brain tissue. Coconut oil is high in saturated fat. “There are healthy saturated fats and there are damaged saturated fats. When animals are fed grain, their antioxidants are depleted and their fats become more susceptible to oxidation and damage. When coconut fat or even animal fat is consumed in its purest form, the saturated fat is protected from oxidation by abundant antioxidants and offers incredible health benefits. Coconut is converted into quick energy and less likely to be stored as fat or cause obesity. It supports the thyroid, heart, and immune system and is one of the healthiest foods in the world today.” Coconut is recommended for cooking, due to its sustainability in high heat. It is also a great substitution for butter.
You will want to eliminate all bad fats, such as hydrogenated and partially-hydrogenated oils, trans fats, and rancid vegetables oils. They are linked to cellular congestion, cancer, heart disease and neuro-toxicity. We know now that all of these diseases can take years to develop and most of them begin in childhood.
Fats to eliminate on the Healthy Kids Plan
x Hydrogenated and partially-hydrogenated oils
x Rancid Oils (corn oil, canola oil, cottonseed oil, soybean oil, safflower oil, and sunflower oil)
x Trans fats (margarine, synthetic butters, and shortening)
x Roasted nuts and seed butters
x Pasteurized and homogenized dairy products

So, did you get all of that?  Yeah...  it took me a bit as well.  Take your time and digest this.  Take notes if you need to, shoot me an e-mail.  I'll be happy to answer any questions that I can.   All I know is what I have experienced personally and what I have been taught.  And that's what I'm sharing here.  I hope you'll take some time to really let this sink in and re-evaluate the choices you're making regarding, no only what you feed yourself, but also what you feed your spouse and your children.  As you can see from the information above, it's not only about your weight.  The food you choose to consume plays an extremely vital role in either helping you to become, or preventing you from becoming the man or woman that God created you to be.  The food you choose to consume will also set the pattern for your kids and their kids and their kids to come.

You may never become a veggie freak.  Your kids may never become little veggie-freak-lets.  But you're reading this for a reason...  I hope that wherever you are on your journey towards health and wellness, that you will be blessed by the information you find here.

I'm in this with you.... and I'm not done yet!

The good news is, there is a ton more information where this came from.  Just keep reading.  Just keep reading.  Just keep reading, reading, reading...

(I may or may not have watching Finding Nemo this weekend... can you tell?)

Have a tremendous week, my friends!

Motivated this Monday,

The Fat Girl,

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Apple Never Falls Far... HEALTHY KIDS, PART I

You know that moment when you open your mouth, and your mother's voice comes out?  I had that un-cool experience the other day.  I can remember vowing to become the "cool mom" when I grew up, but clearly, although cool, I'm also my awesome mother's daughter, and a disciplinarian, at that.

It's funny to me, that no matter how hard we fight it, some part of us will take on the traits of our parents- both good and bad.  

Whitney Zaino writes, in her healthy kids book, 
"Parents are a huge influence. As leaders in the home, we must practice what we preach. How could you possibly expect your child to live a healthy lifestyle but they see you eating donuts, cookies and fast food? The same goes for what you complain about. If you turn your nose to anything green and make negative comments about healthy food, you can bet they will play copycat. We can all agree that how you are raised impacts how you will live when you are an adult. Let's give our children a running start with their health and teach them healthy habits so that when they are older they will not depart from it...." 
Whitney makes some great points here. I love how she challenges us as parents to make wise choices and become who we want our children to be.  I've noticed the "do as I say, not as I do" philosophy really doesn't seem to work out all too well in our house... or anywhere, for that matter,  So when we committed to eating healthier, we knew we were responsible for trying new things, and doing it with the same attitude we expected from our children (you'd be surprised how well I've managed to master pushing past my gag reflex with a smile on my face...  just sayin'.).  And my supplier, (my husband) had to stop sneaking junky candy snacks in his car and at night when he thought no one was looking, because we learned that it was really sending the wrong message to the kids, who ALWAYS seem to find out about these things (they're spies, I tell ya).

But there are days when I just don't FEEL like eating clean (and my scale reminds me of this).  On those days, I might cook something really healthy for the kids and pretend to be busy, so as to avoid said nutritious food, or I'll completely have the wrong attitude when I sit down to eat with them.  And apparently monkey see-monkey do in our house, so when the minis see momma with her poor attitude, they quickly adjust their thinking to mirror my poor attitude, and meal time turns in to war time- where nobody wins.

Even still- when I have a wonderful attitude, I come up against opposition at times.  Whitney writes:

"There will be some children that will inevitably rebel against the new changes around the house.  Who buys the food? You do, of course. Only buy the food you want your child to eat. Parents be parents! Give them choices or nothing to eat! I haven't heard of to many cases of starvation from a child refusing to eat food in the house. Don’t be a short ordered cook. Make the family meal and refuse to make something special for one of the kids that is not eating their food. This is sending the wrong message to the family and especially to this child. They will not starve. When they are hungry, they will eat. As long as it is a healthy meal, it should be what everyone else had for dinner. This is another great opportunity for discipline!"

Thanks Whitney.  I so needed that.  Especially on an evening where spinach and kale are a certainty.  As I was preparing our menu for the week, I went through a mental checklist of everything my kids might say and, knowing that I have a lot on my plate this week, I found myself planning a menu that was more conducive to pleasant attitudes.  You know- the easy stuff that you know they will eat quickly and without complaint.  I have been doing better about eating healthy my self (for the most part) but have found myself giving in more and more here and there to simple temptations

This week, I also entered myself in to a new contest.  This is a summer transformation contest, and I couldn't be more excited.  Unfortunately, I cannot eat all of the things my kids want to eat.  I had to think back to last summer when we first started eating healthy and I had to remember how much my persistence with the kids paid off.  I can remember weeks of tears and fighting and eventually my kids were begging for asparagus, broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, spinach, etc.  Although my kids still enjoy those foods, I have found myself more willing to make exceptions for the sake of simplicity.  If I'm really honest with myself, I'm making exceptions in the kitchen so that I can afford to be a little more lazy as a mom.  Truth.

Sometimes the truth hurts, but it's always necessary.  I don't want to raise kids who are spoiled.  I don't want to raise kids who have no respect for the hard work of others, or for their authority.

So what do I do?  I buck up.  Period. I plan the menu that will bring us all success, I prepare ONLY THAT FOOD, and I take a stand.  I refuse to be a short order cook, and I remind them, in the words of my beloved Momma "You get what you get, and you don't throw a fit."

Yeah, this apple didn't fall far from that tree... and I couldn't be more thankful to come from such a wise tree.

Love you Mom,

The Fat Girl,

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Okay, so I keep giving you tons of tips and ideas.  I even shared with you my own faults and failures when it comes to the whole weight loss journey.

But one thing I've neglected to do is to share with you all of the information that originally triggered the start of this blog- the information from my friend Whitney Zaino that sparked the loss of over 60 pounds in a ten month period.

I realized, as I was looking back over the past months, that I have taken you through several key points in this journey, but there is such tremendous information that Whitney has shared with me, and I feel as if I'm doing a disservice by not sharing it.  So this week, I'll be sharing pieces of Whitney's book each day that I am able to write.  I hope and pray they bless you as you continue on your journey towards health and wellness.

Thanks for keeping up with us on this journey.  There is so much more to share, so I hope you'll stay tuned!

God bless!

The Fat Girl,

Monday, May 20, 2013

Plan Ahead. Menus... check!

So, remember how I was talking about planning ahead and being prepared?

A huge part of that comes from planning your weekly menu.  Have you done this?

I used to walk through the grocery aisles and piece together meals that sounded good to me... until I realized (whilst checking out with tons of food that I absolutely didn't need) that was so NOT the way to go.

And then, when I was learning to eat healthy, I'd write down exactly what we'd be eating for breakfast, morning snack, lunch, afternoon snack, dinner, and a possible evening snack.  But eventually, I realized my control issues, and  that became a pain in my backside... so I came up with a generic menu that I can rotate and change as needed.

It's all about flexibility, folks.

The bare bones of the menu are the same.  For instance, I know in any given week, we will have chicken, spinach, Brussels Sprouts, asparagus, apples, and tons more, but you get the idea.  We try to mix it up, but the core of the menu doesn't change enough to require tremendous planning.  This allows for easier shopping trips, and gives room for when things come up and you can't cook that five course meal you had planned.

That being said, last week when my mom went in to the hospital, I had not completed my menu planning and had only purchased parts of meals.  I was frustrated when I came home and had to plan and prepare meals, and attempted to balance a level of cleanliness (which didn't actually happen) with caring for my family, and cooking.    We didn't totally junk out last week, but the meals weren't what I normally would have prepared, so everyone in the house was cranky and exhausted... and hungry.

So when I went to the store this week, I had a full menu in mind.  I left no room for "what if"s in the menu.  I planned so that no matter what happened this week, we'd be prepared and my husband (who loves to cook) could select something from our menu and prepare it in my absence (if need be).

So that's my tip for today:  Plan your menu.

Plan for quick and easy, or plan for meals that take more time if you'd like (and if you know you have the time to spare).  The key is to plan ahead BEFORE you get to the store, and pick up foods that will nourish and build you up rather than deplete your nutrient supply.

We'll file this one under lessons learned... the hard way.

That's it for now.  I'm off to sleep.

But check back soon, for more from

The Fat Girl