Saturday, December 21, 2013

Sometimes I get disgusted with my shallowness

This blog has absolutely nothing to do with my fitness routine or eating. Tonight I am just really struggling with myself, with the little problems that seem to plague me that just don't matter.

These are some of the things I have worried about this week.

My car is in the shop longer than it should be so I am driving a rental car.
What will the weather be like on Christmas?
I haven't bought presents for some people yet
I won't have time to run all my errands
I am eating too many Christmas goodies
Am I spending too much money on crossfit?
Will I like crossfit?
I am sore from crossfit

And on..and on..and on...ugh. I am irritated with myself. 

Tonight I came home after spending time with a good friend, eating good food, and learning how to bowl. I walked into a warm house. I get to sleep in a warm bed. I get to spend Christmas with family that loves me. What do I really have to worry about in life?

Some people are out there in below freezing temps just wishing for shelter. Some people are spending their first holidays without a loved one. Some just pray for enough money to put food on the table. Some are considering ending it all because they can't handle it anymore.

It's so easy for me to be selfish, thinking about me on a day-to-day basis. But I just think that we should really remember each day to pray for and love on people that don't have as much as us. Because even if you have very little, there are still people that have less. Less money, less love, less support...less of everything.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Boredom-Setting New Goals

I was reading another blog (Runsforcookies..check it out) and she was talking about how she eats a lot when she isn't setting running goals for herself. Now I haven't had a problem with eating a lot lately as I have been pretty good about tracking. But I have been completely bored with my workouts.

I looked into kickboxing and it is quite expensive and not a lot of great options close to my house. So I finally came to my conclusion: I need to set new running goals..not distance goals because that messes with my eating, but I think setting a few short-term running goals will do the trick.

Also, I need to hit the Under Armour Outlet when it opens this weekend and get cold weather running gear...because the treadmill is destroying my soul.

Here are my running goals to be completed by December 31, 2013

1. Run an 8 minute mile
2. Run a 5K in under 30 minutes
3. Run at least 1 mile a day for 30 days starting on November 18, 2013 (as I will have hit the Under Armour outlet by then:))

Happy Cold Weather Running!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Addressing "Fake" Weight Gain

This last week I have been getting back on track with eating. During my friend and former roommate's wedding "month" I found that I was doing a lot of stress and emotional eating. As of Sunday morning, the scale was up a significant amount of weight. My body is one that gains and loses water weight at a pretty rapid speed so I knew at this point the weight wasn't real. However, I also know that if I don't address it, it can become real weight very quickly.

On Sunday I was up about 15 lbs. Through a lot of prayer and meal planning, I was able to get back on track with eating and exercising, working through emotions rather than eating them. This morning I weighed in with 11 of those 15 lbs gone (told you it comes and goes quickly) so I am thankful to say it was probably just water weight.

It also feels good to be back in control of eating. Meal planning and following that plan is what started me on weight loss 2.5 years ago in the first place so it's always the thing that will bring back to where I need to go.

Now I am also trying to address the exercise problem. I am finding that I am burned out and bored with running, walking is still doing the trick as far as calorie burn but I kind of want to find something I truly enjoy.

I ALWAYS loved kickboxing even when I was super overweight, so I am in the process of trying to find a kickboxing gym that has classes that fit into my schedule. Especially with the temperatures getting colder, I think this might be a good attempt at transitioning to indoor exercise.

Either way, it feels good to be back in weight loss mode after a hiatus of weight loss. I should be reporting a total 110 lb loss soon (hopefully in the next two weeks if the scale cooperates). I'll keep you posted..oh and if you know of any good kickboxing gyms in the Omaha Metro Area, feel free to let me know:

Monday, October 28, 2013

Friend's Wedding Day!

I had so much fun this past weekend celebrating one of my closest friend's wedding day. We have been planning and getting ready for this for months and I was so blessed to see her walk down the aisle as the most beautiful bride to be joined together with a man who loves her with everything in him as well as having a deep love for Christ . What an awesome wedding.
I was so honored to be a bridesmaid in Tami and Grant's wedding but I am even more honored to get to call both of these amazing people such good friends.

When I was looking at these pictures of me as a bridesmaid, I also took a look at the bridesmaid photos of the last wedding I was in..a little over two years ago. I can't believe what a difference 100 lbs can make.

That first dress is actually 10 sizes bigger than the dress I am wearing in the second photo...isn't that crazy? Whenever I feel like I am struggling, it is good to see pictures like this to remind me of how far I have come.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Back to Weight Loss Mode

Now that I have finished being in training for races for almost a year, I have started to concentrate a lot more on weight loss. I have a goal to be under 200 by the end of December. This is a completely reachable goal for me but does require some work.

Lately I have been getting up between 5am and 6am in the morning in order to get a decent morning workout in. I found that working out early in the morning tends to keep me on the straight and narrow with eating for the rest of the day. I have also started drinking a smoothie made up of 1 cup coconut milk, 1.5 cups of spinach, 1 cup of berries, and 1 banana. Putting most of my fruits and veggies into my body before I even hit the gym in the morning seems to be helping out a lot with healthy eating as well.

So there you have next goal. I have been working on this weight loss goal for 2.5 years and I am just ready to get there already. I haven't been under 200 since 7th grade and I am excited to see that number. I'll keep you posted with the progress, but to me, hitting this goal is the only option.

Choice made.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Marathon Day-I can't believe I did it!

Yesterday I completed a marathon! This was absolutely the HARDEST thing I have ever done in my life. There are pictures of me smiling during this thing but this is what I actually felt like most of the time.
I had been anxious about getting done in the allotted time for days. So when I started the half-marathon portion (for this course you ran a half marathon and then turned around), I was really running for time. I was really excited because each mile seemed to get better and better. I was running faster than I than I thought I could run this course. So fast that I skipped the first 4 water/food stops.

Big Mistake

Mile 9 is always my enemy and it was no different on this day. Thankfully, I had friends meeting up with me at mile 10 so I figured I could get through mile 9. I was happy this was an up and back course because I believe I would have stopped at the half-marathon mark had that been an option.

At around mile 10, two of my friends, Melita and Jessie, started running the course with me and it was good that they started running with me because that's when I started to think "I don't have any idea how I am going to run another 16 miles." Around mile 11, my friend, Tami caught up with us and decided to run.

This is also the part where my stomach started having significant gastrointestinal problems. I felt extremely sick and needed to stop. But, I really wanted to get a better half-marathon time than I did at the Lincoln Half-Marathon so I kept going without stopping and I beat that time. I was also on track to finish in the allotted time.

It all went downhill from there. After I hit 13.1, I started walking because I NEEDED to stop or I was going to be sick. We finally got to a porta-potty and I was able to stop. After this, a lot of the race is a blur. My stomach was going crazy, I had to walk a lot more than I wanted and my blood sugar levels were so low due to not fueling much during the half-marathon portion, that I thought I was going to faint. At this point, it was one foot in front of the other to finish.

I didn't end up finishing in the allotted time but that was ok, because I finished. I've decided that finishing something that feels impossible, fundamentally changes you. I don't think I have an excuses anymore because when I had 9 miles left, I really didn't know how I could make it through those miles and somehow I did. It makes me believe that I am capable of more than I have ever allowed myself to be capable of.

I was also overwhelmed by all the support. Friends came out to cheer for me and run with me. All of them are amazing (Jess, Amber, Alicia, Sarah, Jane and Erin). And each friend that came out meant sooo much and gave me a little bit extra that I needed to complete the race. I remember saying yesterday that I needed to make a note for myself about how terrible the marathon was so I never run one again. But honestly, now I kind of want to. It was HORRIBLE but with a little more training, hopefully I'll be out there for significantly less than 7 hours and now that I know that I can...I feel like I really should:)

Amber and Alica both came out to cheer for me, it was awesome!

Jenny was one of the people with the race, she was nice enough to stay with us until we completed the race..otherwise we might have gotten super lost:)

Melita and Jessie ran with me most of the way, Melita was awesome enough to stay with me almost the whole time even though she probably could have finished in half that time. Jessie ran 17 miles with us! (Which really means she needs to run a marathon soon)

At the end of the marathon..don't I look relieved?

Tami came out and did 13 miles of the marathon with me, she wants to run the Lincoln Marathon next year. Go Tami!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Each Run is a Gift

Last night I had trouble sleeping. I have been anxious about the marathon and timing and finishing every day this week. Last night I realized that if I already wasn't sleeping over this, it was going to be a long 5 days. So I prayed for God to give me peace and rest during this time.

I decided that this morning I was going to run one last 5k before the marathon at a decently fast pace to see where I was at and calm my anxiety. I got to the beginning of the Keystone Trail and there was this beautiful double rainbow in which it seemed as if that was God's way of saying. "Trust me, you have done the me to take you the rest of the way."

I started to run the first mile and just began to be thankful. Thankful that I have legs to run on, thankful that what used to be a 300+ lb body is now a lot more slim and can carry me 26.2 miles. I realized that getting to run the marathon is a gift rather than something to stress over.

The second mile, the rain just started pouring down but I kept running. I had to slow down considerably because I didn't want to fall on wet pavement and get an injury but I continued to run and be thankful and worship God in the rain.

The third mile was when the rain stopped and my stomach started hurting really bad. I ran through it and ran pretty fast. In the end I averaged just a little over 13 minute miles and realized that I could do this. I could complete this marathon even if I'm the slowest one and the course has been taken apart by the time I'm done. I can and will finish 26.2 miles and I choose to be thankful the whole way.

(I wish I had a picture of the actual double rainbow because it was pretty spectacular, but I didn't have my phone with me on the run.) This is the closest to what it looked like.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Marathon Fears

Next Sunday is the marathon (September 22 if anyone wants to come out for it) and I'll be honest...

I am terrified.

I thought I would talk about why I am terrified because it probably isn't what you would expect. Am I terrified of being able to complete the marathon? No, last year at this time at a significantly heavier weight, I walked a marathon on my own on the Keystone Trail. So I know that I have put in the time and training and can run this thing. I know that I can finish.

But what am I most afraid of? I am afraid of my own pride. I am afraid of my own self-talk when I run this marathon.

I am afraid of being the slowest one out there.

The reality is that I am a very slow runner. In fact, I am not even sure that I will finish in the allotted cut off time which means that all drink stations and everything will be taken down.

I know how this works because when I ran a half-marathon in college (10 years ago or so), I was one of the slowest people out there and all the support was gone. It was awful. But the difference was that with the half-marathon, at least there were still people around because people were still finishing the marathon.

I worry that I will run into a ghost town and even after finishing a marathon, feel like a fat failure...which sounds ridiculous if you think about it. But that's the truth. I think by being open and honest about our fears, they lose their power so that is what I am trying to do here.

So if you could all pray for me during my marathon, I would appreciate it. Conquering this is a huge step for me and I have been sitting in this fear for far too long.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Whole 30- Day 2 Complete

Today, was my second day of finishing the Whole 30. Today was a little different. The point of the Whole 30 is not only to get healthy but also learn about your triggers and eating habits. This is what I learned today.

1. I get bored with food really really fast and need to spend serious time food planning
2. I am not used to eating enough vegetables so I need to buy about double the amount that I had on hand.
3. Grass fed beef is good, but not for both breakfast AND dinner
4. I use food as "entertainment" because sitting at the table eating each meal without distraction has been very difficult for me.
5. I really don't like eating meat in the morning
6. Dates and Macadamia nuts are amazing, but if I am not careful I can treat them like candy and lose control. The point is to have control over food..even healthy food.
7. Trying to find dates without added sugar is hard, once I found them..I wondered WHY anyone adds sugar to them. They are already sweet enough. Are our palates SOOO addicted to sugar that we can't even handle something as sweet as dates without it?
8. This new way of eating has already completely helped my workouts. Today I ran a 10 minute mile, which is extremely rare for me to do. 

Anyway, off to meal planning and preparing for another day on the Whole 30. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Whole 30-Day 1 Complete


I just saw that the last post I wrote was introducing dairy back into my life. Unfortunately, that was a super short experiment. Right after I introduced dairy back into my life, my chest started getting tight when I would lay down at night and I couldn't breathe. By yesterday (Wednesday) I had not slept more than an hour and a half for almost a week because I just couldn't breathe.

Yesterday, my chest was so tight and I couldn't breathe for so long that I was having headaches. I stayed home from work because I honestly felt like I was on death's door. During this time I started researching doing the Whole 30 plan and a lightbulb hit me. When was the last time I was researching the Whole 30? Oh yah, it was right before I went off dairy the first time.

I was having the same symptoms, inability to breathe after lying down, chest feeling tight, headaches..not fun.

I probably should put a disclaimer that if you are feeling these things, you should go to the doctor immediately.. but I'm stubborn, and my insurance I started researching dietary changes instead.

Yesterday, I immediately gave up dairy once the lightbulb hit and incidentally, was able to sleep through the night again.

After spending the day researching the Whole 30 again, I decided to take the plunge. I thought this was an interesting jump for me because this is the first time I have decided to make an extreme dietary change in my life and it had absolutely nothing to do with weight loss.

It has everything to do with health and focus and living the best life that I can possibly live. The Whole 30 isn't a weird crash diet or anything. It really just focuses on putting clean, whole foods into your body and changing some of your body's unhealthy signals (horrible sugar cravings anyone?).

I am hoping by the end of my Whole 30, my breathing problems will be completely gone.

Since I also had another impromptu day off of work, I spent the day at the bookstore reading It Starts With Food which explains the "why" of certain elements of the Whole 30. I found it extremely interesting.

Today was actually pretty easy, a couple of cravings for hot tamales in there..but for the most part, it was easy to stick with it. However, this is the Whole 30 timeline they give you for the first week, so the fact that "So What's the Big Deal" falls on today means I am right on schedule. My "Kill All The Things" days will fall on Sunday and Monday, just as a warning for anyone who comes in contact with me:)

Here are some of the meals I had this morning. I really had to get past my breakfast mentality because I am a gluten free waffles and peanut butter girl almost every morning. So this breakfast was different.
 It is ground beef stir fried with bell peppers, onions and mushrooms in a little olive oil with a side of a cooked apple with cinnamon on it. Who knew an apple with just a little bit of cinnamon could taste like dessert?

Here was lunch. It was a spinach salad with blueberries, ginger chicken (chicken with cut up ginger and onions), avocado, and the juice of a half of a lime. I am not really a salad person, but I had some leftover spinach from my smoothies so thought I would give it a try.

For dinner I just had a grass-fed beef patty with a side of bell peppers and onions with a little olive oil.

I also had some raw macadamia nuts and dates for a post-workout snack. They were delicious. All in all, this first day I feel better than I have in a LONG time. We'll see how tomorrow goes:)

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Welcome Back Dairy!

This week I have been experimenting with adding dairy products back into my diet. I got rid of dairy a while ago because I thought I was having digestive issues. This was SOOO hard for me because dairy was my main source of protein (I don't like meat very much.) As I continued to do this, I had trouble feeling like I was getting enough protein. Then I started having a sneaking suspicion that I didn't have a dairy problem (occasionally I seemed to be able to eat cheese, yogurt or ice cream without a problem) instead, occasionally I would have a dairy problem because that dairy contained gluten.

When you have Celiac disease, dairy and gluten are a debilitating combination.

So this week I added back greek yogurt (Yum!) and cheese. I have been eating a TON of chicken and cheese quesadillas and I haven't gotten sick once.

It has been awesome!

Not only have I felt like I had more variety in my food. I felt like I was able to stay in my calories better because I was actually full.

Sorry vegans, I am back on the dairy train. 

Next stop..gluten free pizza!

Monday, August 26, 2013

One step closer to an awesome body.

This weekend I started to realize that I needed to get super focused if I was going to hit my weight goals (I want to be in the 1's by the end of October). So I got up and did some weight lifting. Then I did incline work on the treadmill at an incline of 10-15. I learned this can burn about 900 calories in an hour for me. After that I ran. I feel all ready to take on the world again.

I also made some new food goals. I am still sticking with my 1800-2000 calories because this seems to be my sweet spot, but I am not allowing myself to buy anything from a gas station.

I am on the road a lot for my job and sometimes if I am not prepared or I don't pack enough food, I find myself stopping for sugary snacks at a gas station. I justify it by saying I have the calories available.

However, this both messes up my financial goals (2 or 3 dollars here or there adds up) but it also makes me crave more sugar.

So I am trying to get really focused, especially only 4 weeks before the marathon (yikes). I definitely want to put my body in the best possible condition it can be for this thing so it's not miserable.


Monday, August 19, 2013

A Week of Calorie Counting

Last week I started calorie counting again. This seems to be the thing that works best for me. For some reason, I have trouble simply eating healthy or eating clean.

This week, I want to make sure I calorie count each day. I seem to be able to lose by staying in between 1800 and 2000 calories. This is also a good range so I don't feel deprived.

I was listening to a podcast where a girl was talking about making sure your calories are high enough because if you eat 1400 calories, your body will adjust to that and you will need to eat 1400 calories for the rest of your life in maintenance.

No thanks.

She also talked about how helpful weight lifting is so that you weigh more at the same size which means you can eat more. This was definitely food for thought.

Anyway, I feel like my food is back to where it should be after a difficult season. Now I just need to get adjusted to waking up early and running again. I was supposed to today and it didn't happen. I'm still going to get a run in this morning before I leave for work but I like having it done by now.

Not much else to report today, so I'll leave you with this...

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Healthy Eating and New Jeans!

Lately I've been experimenting with eating "real food" over "chemicals." I decided after my run today, rather than the typical gatorade, I would try to do coconut water. The only ingredient in coconut water is "coconut water." So you know it's decent for you.
And let me just say, wow it's disgusting. This is probably the most disgusting thing I have ever put in my mouth. Give me regular water or Gatorade any day. Sorry, clean eating folks, I apparently like my chemicals.

I have been having trouble getting back into running this week. My typical weeks usually consist of about 30-35 miles. This week I have only done about 15 so far. I was supposed to run long today and only did 4. My body and my mind are just not into it. But I think I will try for a longer run tomorrow.

After this marathon training is over, I'm thinking about looking into kickboxing. I have always loved kickboxing and the strong, amazing way it has made me feel. But the last time I did it I was super overweight and felt out of place. I'm interested in how it will be now.

On a more exciting note, yesterday I had to buy new jeans because the ones I have are too big. Unfortunately, I still feel like my thighs are big tree trunks, but if the jeans size is going down, I guess that is a good sign.

Maybe kickboxing will do something for building muscle in my legs that running is just not giving me.

Well, off to enjoy my Saturday. Hopefully you will as well. Happy Weekend!


Tuesday, August 6, 2013


I've been thinking a lot about success lately so I decided to start documenting some of my successes on my blog. The thing is, when I am doing really well (like yesterday or last week) I tend not to need to think much about my successes, everything is going right.

But today, I needed to think about successes.

Everything seemed out of control. I was moody and irritable, hungry, crazy, etc. So I didn't follow my meal plan completely and I craved sugar. Normally, this would send me spinning out of control. On days like this when I feel completely out of control, my eating disorder tells me to get control by going on a strict diet. I decided today I wasn't going to let the eating disorder win. So I am going to measure my successes.

1. When I was overwhelmed, I walked for 20 minutes to calm down rather than immediately turning to sugar.
2. Even though I did end up eating sugar, I made myself plan what I was going to get, buy only that and then wait until I got home to eat it so I was mindfully eating it.
3. I got all my work done even though I was in a foul mood.
4. Instead of sitting in from of Hulu and binging (like I would normally do on a day like today), I chose to go to poker and socially engage and I feel much better.

Regardless of the fact that I ate candy and french fries today, I still made positive decision in the midst of it..and tomorrow I will just get back on the plan I already had for myself rather than trying to make a new (strict) one.

After all, practice makes perfect right?

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Fighting Back Against the Lizard Brain

I am a big Seth Godin fan. Last weekend I read something in his book that I had read before but it really made sense to me this time. He discussed the lizard brain which if you know Seth Godin, you understand what this is. This is one of his quotes.

“The lizard brain is hungry, scared, angry, and horny.

The lizard brain only wants to eat and be safe.

The lizard brain will fight (to the death) if it has to, but would rather run away. It likes a vendetta and has no trouble getting angry.

The lizard brain cares what everyone else thinks, because status in the tribe is essential to its survival.

A squirrel runs around looking for nuts, hiding from foxes, listening for predators, and watching for other squirrels. The squirrel does this because that's all it can do. All the squirrel has is a lizard brain.

The only correct answer to 'Why did the chicken cross the road?' is 'Because it's lizard brain told it to.' Wild animals are wild because the only brain they posses is a lizard brain.

The lizard brain is not merely a concept. It's real, and it's living on the top of your spine, fighting for your survival. But, of course, survival and success are not the same thing.

The lizard brain is the reason you're afraid, the reason you don't do all the art you can, the reason you don't ship when you can. The lizard brain is the source of the resistance.”
Seth Godin, Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? 

Last weekend I was feeling frustrated because my long run was 17 miles and I found myself quitting at 10 miles. Was I sick? No..was I injured? No. In fact, with 100% certainty I believe that I could have physically finished 17 miles. Why didn't I? Something about running a distance I have never run before scared that crap out of me. I had walked it, sure, but I hadn't run it. Running is harder, running takes a lot of focus, running hurts.

The Lizard Brain told me not to. Seth Godin talks in his book about how quitting isn't bad but quitting at something when you are emotional is bad. Quitting at something when you are emotional is listening to the lizard brain. You should only quit when you have thought out why quitting is the best option and why you will have more benefit from quitting then sticking around.

I had an epiphany during this time.

I tend to quit when the going gets tough. I am the mile 26 quitter. When I can see the finish line, I tend to quit. This doesn't just apply to running in my life, but it tends to apply in a lot of ways. I will work hard until it takes something that feels too hard to finish, then I will quit. There is something very scary about going outside of myself, facing fear and pushing past my limits to get somewhere.

So I made an agreement with myself this week. Whatever mileage I said I was going to do, I do. Yesterday it was 8 miles of pure boredom around a track. Today it was 10 miles in the scorching hot afternoon. But I did it. Both days I wanted to quit extremely bad. Today, I ran a little too long in the heat without enough water. (I learned my lesson and won't do that again:). But I have decided that I am fighting back against the lizard brain by facing my fear and reaching my goal even when the end seems completely outside of myself.

Saturday, I have to do 20 miles. Not only will this be hard because I have never run 20 miles but it will be more difficult because I didn't do my 17 miles last week. But I don't care because I said I am going to do it and I will.

Screw the Lizard Brain

Here is me after my run today. You see that blank look on my face? That's because I couldn't think of anything except for "water, water..."

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Dear Fat On My Thighs

Dear Fat On My Thighs,

I've decided to write you this letter because you need to know that I have decided to end our decades long relationship. I know I tried to end this relationship a while ago, but it seems you have decided to stalk me.

I thought I could shake you by walking long distances. I started walking 2, 3 and 4 miles and then finally walking a marathon hoping that you would finally get the hint that I just didn't want to be with you anymore. But no, you stuck like glue.

I then decided that running would do the trick. I could easily get rid of you through running. I found myself running 30 mile weeks, knowing that with each mile I was chasing you away.

Then I decided I would run a half marathon, and now training for a full, but you still decided that you just couldn't stay away from me.

In fact, you must have started to make threats to other areas of my body, because my arm fat couldn't get away fast enough. Then today, I decided to measure and you were still there, solid as a rock but my chest had decided to once again run away screaming to the tune of another two inches lost.

So this is it, fat on my thighs, I have decided to be done with you once and for all. I have found someone new, something that I think will keep you away for good.

Kettlebell swings are my new restraining order. I started hitting them hard and I expect you to finally heed this advice and go find someone else to cling to. I hear some of the supermodels on the catwalk are looking for someone just like you to complete them,

No longer yours truly,

Monday, July 22, 2013

My Heart is Full

After a couple of weeks of feeling drained and moody and questioning God, my heart as been filled up.

I was supposed to go out of town for the weekend with my mom to see my aunt. Right before I left, I found an amazing gift on my doorstep.

My good friend, Dinah, had put together a book filled with verses and messages from friends and family encouraging me and offering kind words. This was for my 30th birthday (even though my birthday was in February).

Personally, I think the book came at the perfect time.

It's not every day that you get such a wonderful gift of encouragement. That alone would have filled up my soul after feeling depleted.

But then I got to spend the weekend with my mom and aunt Karin in Kansas. We had amazing conversation, good wine and casino time:)

My aunt Karin is awesome and has been one of my biggest support systems and cheerleaders in life. It was so fun seeing her.

Here are some of the trip pictures.

Then today my dad came up for treatment (he has cancer treatment a few times a year in Omaha) and I got to spend some fun times eating out and laughing with my parents.

It has been a wonderful week and I am feeling refreshed.

"Taste and see that the Lord is good."-Psalm 34: 8a

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Wow, running really does matter

I went for my first "real" run today after being unable to run since my injury on July 1. So I have either been walking or weight training.But I haven't been exercising like I've wanted to.

Yesterday I went see Leslie Martin at who does Active Release Technique (Don't ask me what it is because I don't know) I called it "leg voodoo" because this morning I went on a run and it felt like I had never been injured.

It was amazing. But the most notable thing about getting to run this morning was my immediate mood improvement. I have been moody, irritable, mad at people and generally lethargic for almost 2 weeks now. As soon as I went on my run, it was like I could handle all my problems again. I am back to goal setting and getting things accomplished. Who knew it could have such as impact.

I am sooo thankful I can continue to train for the marathon but now I feel like I have to play catch up. I am back in the game. Sorry for anyone who has had to deal with moody Cassie lately:)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Maintaining and Frustrated

I have to be honest.

I am frustrated with my weight loss. Oh it would be really easy to say "Oh you've lost 102 lbs and kept it off that's really good" and it is really good. I'm not negating the work I've done.

I could also lie to myself and say "Oh you are doing everything right and the scale isn't frustrating." But I used to lie to myself all the time, that is how I got so overweight in the beginning.

The truth is that my eating has been atrocious. Not every day, some days are better than others. Last month I counted and stayed in my calorie goal 12 out of 30 days and ate too much 18 out of 30 days. While I only missed 3 days of exercise out of 30 (also known as rest days).

Clearly, exercise is not the problem.

I've been toying with new food plans, knowing that if I went on them I would feel amazing but they all make me feel deprived. It's like there is a little child inside me that wants what they want when they want it.

I think I have finally narrowed down the culprit.

I have a sugar problem.

And it's a big problem. I once read that sugar is as addictive as crack cocaine. I wouldn't be surprised. So a part of me thinks I need to give it up because it's simply something I CAN'T (or haven't been able to up to this point) eat in moderation.

I keep saying to myself, "But I'll be so different from everyone if I give it up." Of course, I also became different from everyone when I gave up gluten, so it's not like sugar is much of a stretch beyond that.

I keep thinking and planning and reasoning but ultimately what I want to do is figure out how to completely give up sugar while simultaneously eating an entire bag of M&M's.

Not possible.

So I think that ultimately leaves me with one choice. Pull up my big girl panties and make a decision about my future. Do I want to get as fit and healthy as possible? Do I want to be a real athlete? Do I want to hit my goal weight/size? And do I want all that more than I want the hot tamales and coconut milk ice cream?

Ok fine, I'm on it.

Yah, this isn't me or my stomach..hopefully soon.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Back to running

This will be a short post. But I wanted to tell everyone that I am back to running:) I was starting to get nervous with my injury. While I didn't run long or fast today, I at least ran. I made it a little less than 2 miles. I was soooo excited.

Hopefully by tomorrow I will be able to do my mileage as written on my plan (4 miles) and this weekend I'll be able to RUN 15 miles instead of walk it (if I never have to walk for four hours again, it will be too soon.)

I am headed out to a 14 hour client day packed with my healthy chicken tacos, my water bottle and an Ipod full of Zig Ziglar encouragements.

Happy Monday!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

14 miles

Today, my long run was 14 miles. Because I am still recovering from an injury. I made the choice to walk the whole 14 miles.

I talked one of my friends into doing the 14 miles with me so I wouldn't be bored out of my mind. However, I was still bored.

If felt like it took forever. In reality it did take forever (about 4 hours and 20 minutes). If there is yet another reason to like running more than walking, it's the amount of time it takes.

We went to walk around Lake Zorinsky and 14 miles effectively means twice around the whole lake. I kept joking about how I used to think that my 4 mile walk around one side of the lake was awesome.

We started around 6:30am which was the best idea on the planet because by the end of the walk (around 11am..seriously?) it was HOT. I am thankful that most of it was completed in the early morning hours.

Needless to say, I am icing my calf today and fully planning on running again starting Monday.

The upside is that I burned 2083 calories. I guess I can eat chocolate today:)

Friday, July 5, 2013

My Very Dave Ramsey Challenge Day

Even though I have been following Dave Ramsey for a long time, I haven't gone full force with "The Total Money Makeover" until more recently.

The biggest problem I have been having is sticking to a solid grocery budget. So I decided to give myself a challenge today. I was going to take all of my change, turn it in for cash and that would be the amount that I would spend on groceries.

When I took my change in,  it equaled 34.26

 34.26 on groceries was going to be hard. After all the LEAST amount that I usually spend is 50 with some weeks ending up between 80-100 (Gluten free food is expensive).

First, I ventured to Aldi. I have only heard good things about this place. So, I figured it would be a lot easier sticking to a grocery budget there.

It was a bust. Aldi doesn't do very well with gluten free labeling and the prices of the fresh produce were just about the same as Trader Joes. So I left.

I then went to Trader Joes. I had to make some difficult decisions while I was there such as choosing to make bean burritos rather than chicken tortillas this week for lunches (I already had beans at home and the organic chicken was super expensive). I also usually would've made some "on the spot" purchases like extra gluten free oatmeal and gluten free cupcakes, maybe a bottle of wine..but I did my best to stick to the list. In the end, I spent 34 dollars exactly.

Here are all the things I got for 34 dollars

1. A bunch of bananas
2. 1 loaf Udi's gluten free bread
3. 1 Watermelon
4. 1 Carton of Coconut Milk
5. 1 Bag of iceberg lettuce
6. 1 bag of corn tortillas
7. 1 box of Gluten free cereal
8. 1 Bag of Organic Strawberries
9. 1 package of Organic All Beef Hot Dogs
10. 1 Box of Rice Pasta Mac and Cheese
11. 1 Carton of Dark Peanut Butter Cups
12. 1 Bag all natural potato chips

I'm sure as I begin to understand couponing and menu planning more, I'll be able to do even better. But for now, I am very proud of sticking to my Dave Ramsey budget.

After grocery shopping, I sold some books to the used bookstore for 17 dollars..then I went home and made about 10 dollars doing surveys on Mturk...Dave would be proud:)

Eating Healthy On A Holiday

I didn't eat healthy on the 4th of July. I didn't even think or try to eat healthy on the 4th of July. My roommate/good friend and I never see each other (even though we live together which is funny) and so we decided we were going to spend the day at the lake, drinking wine and laying out. Since she is getting married in four months, we also realized it probably be a while before we got to do this again.

So we packed a cooler with hot dogs, marshmallows, chocolate, wine and brought two bags of chips. It was all delicious.

Then on the way home we got pizza (gluten free for me).

I got a nice tan, drank soo soo wine, read a book, had great conversation and generally had a relaxing day with a good friend.

All the extra calories were totally worth it.

The trick is going to be getting back on track today. Wish me luck:)

Monday, July 1, 2013

Reexamining everything

I have been dealing with a little bit of an injury that today became a bigger injury. On Thursday I felt like I pulled a small muscle in my calf. It hurt a little but only when I ran. I continued to run and do my mileage as planned. On Saturday I did  9 miles but had to walk a little because of the injury. No big deal. I felt like taking Sunday off would give it plenty of time to heal.

This morning I was sprinting around the track and felt something pop in my calf. It almost knocked me to the ground. Then I spent the rest of the day in pain and limping. Walking upstairs is excruciating.

Unfortunately, immediately after this happened I had to go home and get ready for a 12 hour work day. For me a 12 hour work day means spending a lot of time in my car when I'm not with clients. This enables me to have a lot of time to think.

One of my biggest fears of this whole weight loss process has been having an injury that made it difficult for me to continue exercising. Now in all fairness I don't think (hope) that this injury will hinder me or my marathon training for too long. But nevertheless it caused me to think about something.

Could I continue this weight loss journey without exercise right now? Is my food healthy enough to get to my goal weight without exercise?


It's time I reevaluate what I am doing. The reality is that I love certain kinds of food (sugar) and I love that I have been able to eat plenty of what I want and still lose weight because I workout so much. This has caused me to shift my thinking quite a bit.

Not only do I need to be thinking "eating clean is probably healthy, I should do that." I actually need to make steps to clean up my diet a lot so that I don't NEED to exercise to feel healthy. Because there are some days my eating is sooo crappy that the only reason I feel healthy if because I ran 5 miles that morning. Hopefully eating clean will  make me a better exerciser as well.

All in all, I am sure this injury is a blessing in disguise to make me take a good hard look at my eating. Unless of course I don't get to run the marathon..and then I will just cry.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Real Food

Lately, I have been experimenting with trying to eat only "real food." Obviously this means healthy yummy food like fresh fruits and vegetables. But it also means that when I want a junk food, I need to learn how to make it from scratch.

This has been a good experiment because it has made me think about the actual food that my junk food is made out of. Lately, I have been craving a lot of salty, starchy foods (this is weird for me since I am a sweet eater.)

Today when I got home from work I really really really wanted potato chips. I was kind of frustrated because I didn't have any at home and I didn't want to go buy some. But then I thought to myself "Wait, don't I have potatoes? I need to figure out how to make potato chips."

Incidentally baked potato chips are really easy.

Just preheat the oven to 400. Slice up some potatoes really thin. Soak them in water for 10 minutes. Then put them on an oven tray. Put your topping of choice on them (I sprinkled olive oil and salt on them) and then baked them for 10 minutes, flip them over and bake them for another 15 minutes.

They are delicious, hit the spot and I didn't feel like crap afterwards. Plus I didn't spent an extra 2.49 at the gas station buying chemical crap. I knew every single ingredient in these potato chips.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Scale Freedom

Yesterday I listened to a fitness podcast where the person kept saying "Stay off of the freakin scale."

She was talking about her eating disorder and how much the eating disorder had to do with the scale and how much better she felt when she got rid of it.  She started working on making small eating changes and performance goals and her body just became what she wanted it to look like.

It's so true. Even though I "gave up the scale," I will still step on it from time to time. But I noticed that when I step on it, it doesn't really make me happy even if it says something good.

You know what does make me happy?

The fact that I ran my fastest 5k this morning, running 12 miles last Saturday and still having enough energy to get through the rest of the day, eating fruits and vegetables and feeling amazing, and saying "no" to a king sized candy bar at lunch yesterday when I could have said "yes."

Little goals, lifestyle goals, performance goals..all of those things make me happy.

The scale tells me nothing.  So instead, I am going to continue making performance goals, continue looking better and better in clothes, continue caring about "size" rather than "weight," and continue to work on not medicating myself with food.

Friday, June 21, 2013

First Week of Marathon Training (In Review)

For those of you who don't know, I recently signed up for the Omaha marathon which is on September 22, 2013.

I know I said that I wouldn't probably run a marathon or even another half-marathon this year, but apparently I forgot.

This is the first week of training for me for the marathon that is in 13 weeks or so.

The first day was awesome. Monday I ran 3.1 miles at 5:30 in the morning, followed by a 2 mile walk/run. I was pretty happy with this day. There is nothing like sweating at 5:30am in the morning.

On Monday I started to lose my voice but I didn't think it was a big deal.

Tuesday morning I work up feeling a little weak but didn't think much of it. I did 3 miles at 6:30am in the morning and came home and crashed.

Then I crashed Tuesday and Wednesday. I couldn't even work. Bronchitis had invaded my body. Yesterday I decided that I needed to get back in the game so I decided to go for a walk.

I walked a mile before I was down for the count. Such a bummer.

Now it's Friday. Tomorrow I'm slated to do a 12 mile run and my energy is back so hopefully I will be able to get some training in the weekend.

Hopefully next training week will be much better. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Inability to Talk

The last three days my throat has been very scratchy. I said "hmm, I wonder if I am coming down with something."

Today I woke up and there was a huge lump in my throat. But I got up at 6am and did my 3 mile run anyway (there is definitely something to the idea of running before your body has figured out what it is doing).

When I got home, I felt overly exhausted and decided to just lay down for a few minutes. I couldn't get out of bed for a few hours.

I was about to get up and get ready to go see clients when I opened my mouth to talk and almost nothing came out.

Then I started coughing like crazy.

After that I looked in the mirror and noticed I looked like I got run over by a truck. 

Needless to say, I went back to bed.

This has happened to me so many times that I know if I don't reign it in now, I will have full fledged bronchitis. 

I am sick and I hate that. I am hoping (and planning) for this to only be a one day thing. (At least the part with the exhaustion, I can handle a sore throat for a few days).

 So I guess I am catching up on some TV (any good new shows anyone?) and am hoping that I wake up with a clear throat, clear lungs, and the spirit of the energizer bunny tomorrow. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

How Funny Is the Scale?

I was just reading someone else's blog and they were talking about losing 3 lbs. They were talking about how amazing they felt because they lost 3 lbs. I don't want to take anything away from this person for losing 3 lbs, kudos to them for losing the weight.

But it just made me wonder, why do we let 3 lbs define our identity?

For instance, I just ate a bowl of coconut milk ice cream at 9 o'clock at night. After spending two years of watching my body like a hawk, I can tell you that my body would most likely gain three lbs on the scale from this delicious ice cream.

That being said, there are some things that I know rationally such as...

I know I didn't actually gain 3 lbs. That would involve me having to have eating 10,500 calories over my regular calorie burn (2150) + what I burned in exercise today (510). Effectively in order to have actually gained 3 lbs, I would have had to eat 13,160 calories..also known as one elephant, two giraffes and a piccolo player. 

That being said, had I been married to the scale like I used to be, seeing that 3 lb gain tomorrow would ruin my whole day, make me feel like a failure and ultimately result in a binge. 

How ridiculous? 

Now I do think the scale is an excellent tool to use when you are trying to lose massive amounts of weight. You have to tweak your eating all through this process and it's good to see what works and what doesn't. I am currently in another "eating tweak" right now. This actually usually involves a period of time where I fluctuate at the same weight (within about a 5lb range) until I figure out the next push forward I need to do. 

On top of that I have added weight training so I have put on a couple of lbs. But my body has never felt better or stronger and in reality, it has actually never been smaller (smallest size since I was about 14 years old). 

Why do we care soooo much what that stupid scale says? 

If I was trying to "make weight" tomorrow, I wouldn't have eaten that coconut ice cream tonight. In fact, I would have eaten a super light dinner and probably been really cranky. My calories are fine. For long-term weight loss, I am doing everything right. I am counting calories, I am weight training, and I am running but when I live by the scale I am not enjoying my life.

It's time to stop the madness.

-Stop letting three pounds define you.
-Start enjoying the food you get to consume rather than trying to fit your food in a box that works for everyone else. 
-Workout because you love it or because it makes you feel good rather than because you have to see a number on the scale.
-Be present in life, look around, meet new people...stop trying so hard
-The healthier you are, the less weight will stick around, this includes mentally healthy as well.

Lets try to take my advice together:)


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

15 Miles

Yesterday I had the day off and decided I wanted to get in a workout. Since I have been toying with the idea of signing up for the Omaha Marathon, I wanted to see if I still had the mental capability to do a long mileage day.

I have been walking this week because I desperately need to go buy new running shoes this weekend. I have officially run through two pairs.
Now when I run, my knees hurt a lot. So I will be spending Saturday in a running store finding my new perfect pair.

I started out my 15 mile walk by myself at a the park/trail near my house. I finished four miles then joined some friends for three more miles. It was 90 degrees out and I needed a lot more water than I had for this 15 mile venture, so I ended up finishing the last 8 miles on the treadmill at the gym.

It was hard. But I did it.

Since I have taken a lot of break time since the half-marathon, I had forgotten how amazing it is to push myself two miles past my breaking point. It feels like every time I do a long workout like this, it forms a new level of character in me.

I love it. I forgot how much I love it.

It makes me think I am ready to get back into the long run game.

On another note, I am pretty happy with the Kettlebell workouts I have been doing. One of my friend's gave me a bunch of dresses that she didn't want anymore so I tried them on. I especially liked this one.
I was pretty happy with the definition I am starting to see in both my arms and legs because of this training. I never used to wear dresses because I didn't like how I looked in them. Now I think you might be seeing me in dresses all the time:)

Happy Wednesday Everyone!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Two Years of Weight Loss

Hi everyone,

Today I am celebrating two years of being on this journey. I remember the first weekend that I started this weight loss journey. I was in a friend's wedding. It was hard because I had to plan my meals around the day and figure how to eat properly when I didn't know what food was being served. In the end, I think that probably was a gift from God.

If I could plan my food that weekend, I could plan it anytime.

I remember when I weighed at my heaviest (102 lbs more than I do now:) and I would read "success" stories. These success stories would discuss how people would take years to get off the weight. I always said it wouldn't take me that long.

Little did I know how long it takes to make real and lasting changes.

Two years later I'm still not at goal but I am 102 lbs down. Losing weight this slowly has truly made it a part of my life and no matter how many slip ups I have, I know that I'll never go back to where I was before. I was cleaning out my garage the other day and found this picture.
Not only do I look fat in this picture, but I just don't look like I took care of myself very well (and seriously, why didn't anyone tell me that this hair was NOT a good look for me)

Now I look like this
So even though I still have a ways to go to hit goal weight, I'll take present Cassie over past Cassie any day. Even just for the better hair:)

I eat healthier than I ever have, workout more than ever before, and have removed most (but not all unfortunately) of my binge days...and that's ok, it takes time to change your life. But every part of the journey has been worth it. 

I thought I'd list some "non-scale" victories that have happened during this journey.

1. I do weight training now. This actually took me about two years but has changed my body in about one month which is crazy. I even enjoy it. 
2. My home office is upstairs in my house and I don't think twice about going up and down the stairs to get things to work on.
3. I started running with a group of people and even though I'm not as fast as them, I don't feel bad about myself..I know I'll get there. 
4. I have arm muscles
5. I have gone down 4 pants sizes just since I started weight training
6. A binge sends me into a 3 day bad eating pattern rather than a 3 week bad eating pattern. This may seem minor but is actually HUGE for me. 
7. I eat a spinach salad most days for lunch, not because I LOVE spinach but because I know that salad will keep me alert for an all day work day.
8. I workout on 13 hour work days. I didn't even do this last year. 
9. I'm looking at a possible "goal size" (8) rather than "goal weight" because who cares about the number?
10. My hair is pretty awesome..I know this has nothing to do with weight loss but I really can't get over how bad it was:)

Here's to being a goal size in two more years (although I'm actually hoping for one)

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Frosting From A Can

Sorry it's been a while since I blogged. Life, work, relationships, etc. has gotten in the way. I've also found that I've had to deal with a whole new level of emotional eating.

That is why I found myself eating frosting out of a can on Sunday.

What? This isn't me anymore. Thankfully, I didn't eat the whole thing (although I probably would have in the past).

On Sunday I had to tell a guy that was super into me that I wasn't into him (for various, legitimate reasons) and I felt like I was kicking a puppy.

Somehow it emotionally drained me so much that I felt myself on the verge of a binge (hence the frosting). I realized it about half way through and threw the rest of the frosting (and potato chips) away.

I've been reading the book "Made to Crave" that talks about how we are creatures who were created to crave for God, but many of us replace that craving with food. (Others replace that craving with drugs, alcohol, etc.) I've currently been working through the emotions that go along with that because some days (like frosting day) I will be halfway through a binge before I even notice I'm doing it.

On a lighter note, on Saturday it was super rainy outside, rendering me wanting to be completely worthless. My roommate, Tami, and I decide to go do a 2 mile walk just to get a workout in. She wanted to drive to the "pretty" area of the trail to start. We drove to the trail and got out. It was still raining. Then Tami realized that she locked her keys in the car.

So our 2 mile walk turned into a 7.34 mile walk/run back to the house.

The funny thing is, that when Tami's fiancee took her to go get her car, she found out that the car was unlocked the whole time.

She swears she didn't do it on purpose.


Thursday, May 30, 2013

It's Not You It's Me-Except It Is You

I finally decided to take a break from a relationship that I have been in every day for over a year. This relationship has determined whether I would be happy or sad and it has messed up my thinking each day.

Last night, the scale and I decided to take a break.
Yep, it was a good run. I had fun every morning when I woke up and those numbers were lower. But soon, I started to get obsessive about seeing those numbers go lower.

If I started the day and the numbers were lower, I would be in a good mood.
If the numbers were higher, I would be in a bad mood. Then all of a sudden it would seem like a chore to eat well, rather than something that is just naturally healthy for my body. Exercise seemed like something I HAD to do rather than something I wanted to do.

But the biggest problem in our relationship occurred over the last two weeks. I started serious weight training a couple of weeks ago. My body has never felt better. I dropped two jeans sizes in two weeks, but the scale shot up 7 lbs.

All of a sudden I'm completely insecure about my weight loss..even though I am SMALLER than I have been since my freshmen year in high school.

Enough is enough.

This isn't forever but it's definitelytime  to take a break and listen to my body, rather than a number.

Monday, May 27, 2013

I'm Back-The Shortest Memory on the Planet

Hey everyone. Sorry I have been off grid for about a week. Last week, I worked like crazy and didn't have a lot of time for other things.

I have also been experimenting with several different ways of eating.

Two weeks ago, I went completely clean and felt amazing. I ate very Paleo-like and my body felt awesome. But then one gluten free corn dog and it all went to hell in a handbasket.

When my body is eating super clean and then I eat one processed food item, my body doesn't know what to do with it. Thus, it gains a TON of weight overnight and it takes me forever to get it back off. When I looked at that, I figured there were two solutions: never eat crap again or live a life of balance.

Isn't balance what this whole journey was about in the first place?

So anyway, I decided to go back to the way of eating that helped me lose 102 lbs in the first place. That is count calories and exercise, create a deficit every day.

This makes me feel less deprived and makes me feel like I have options that I don't have when I eat clean. I'm stubborn and it's weird, but it works.

I already feel more free today than I have in a while.

I also can't tell you how many times I have tried to completely clean up my eating and found myself back here. I have the shortest memory on the planet. Hopefully as I continue the rest of the weight loss journey, I will remember that I can still eat healthy without eating 100% healthy and feeling deprived. The toughest part about weight loss is trying not to speed it up because I don't know about you but whenever I try to speed anything up, I usually end up crashing and burning. Weight loss is no different.

I don't really have any pictures to post today, so I thought I would post a picture of my cousin's graduation.
We celebrated Sara graduating yesterday and it was fun. The best part was the Barefoot Moscato...oh, and celebrating Sara:)

Monday, May 20, 2013

Dang Hormones

Disclaimer: Sorry Men, you probably shouldn't read this

I know I have been a bit of a slacker lately with writing on this blog..sorry everyone. The thing is, last week was so beautiful and sunshiney (word?).

Last week was amazing for me. I ate healthy all week. I completely eliminated dairy from my diet. The food I was consuming consisted of fruits, vegetables, clean meats, nuts, coconut milk..and that's basically it.

I felt like I could rule the world. Last week I lost four pounds (The most weight I have lost in one week in a LONG time) and I had energy galore. In fact, I didn't even have to count calories. My body felt like it had regulated itself. I thought "wow, this is like a whole new world of eating for me."

And then today

BAM...Hormones (Ladies, you know exactly what I mean).

I kept trying to eat healthy all day but I could not get full no matter how many vegetables and fruits I tried to slam down my throat.

Cut to the 4'o clock box of hot tamales.

Dang it! Now I'm not mad at myself for eating sugar. But I am frustrated at myself for eating chemicals.

I guess I still have a ton more learning to do about how to keep from feeling like I'm starving during this week every month.

If anyone has any ideas, let me know.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Weird New Reality

Last night I went to a bar to play poker. Sometimes if I have an open night, I'll go find a venue to play some poker. I don't have a ton of friends who like to play so a lot of times I'll go by myself.

I felt like I was entering the twilight zone.

It seemed like the guys couldn't stop hitting on me. This is weird to me. When you spend most of your life being the "fat girl" or the "fat friend," you don't really get hit on that much.

I kind of started to realize that this journey really just isn't about looking better, it actually changes my interaction with the world. All of a sudden I went from the invisible one to the visible one.

I think there is another interesting observation that I had. When you don't have looks on your side growing up, you really have to hone your personality. Usually fat girls are funny and charming and they just become the "funny, charming fat friend."

So when the funny, charming fat friend becomes the funny, charming hot friend all of a sudden the worlds gets shifted upside down.

There isn't really a whole lot of thought related to this blog post, I'm just sharing something that I kind of thought was interesting and also, I'm enjoying this new reality:)

I didn't really have a picture to share today so I thought I'd share this quote:)