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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Daydream Believer

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I am a day dreamer. My mind can brilliantly exploit every situation in my head. I overthink, overanalyze and sometimes stress about things that may or may not ever occur but I imagine in my head they could occur and then I dream up 50 scenarios how it COULD go down and then 50 solutions. I’ve done this since I was a child. I assume it goes hand in hand with my creative writing skills. The last few days I’ve been mainly focused on two of my daydreams, both of which are probably tied to my Biggest Loser addiction.
First, there is one-derland. Hitting 199 pounds. I’m very close…and have been for a while. I’m ok with admitting, I’ve been stuck in a weight loss purgatory for the last few weeks. When we started our journey almost 2 years ago, 199 seemed like a number I would never see again. It was so stinking far away. Know, I’m knocking on the door and it’s a bit mindboggling. I don’t know the last time my weight was in the 100’s. I’m guessing maybe my junior year of high school? So a mere 20 years ago? Cue anxiety music here. Just kidding. I’m really excited about hitting it. But in my head, it was going to be here in Des Moines, at Aspen, on a normal Tuesday night weigh-in with Molly and Scott at my side. Would I cry? Would I scream? Jump around? High five and hugs? Would Scott and Molly get a little teary-eyed? Would I feel like I had conquered the world and be overcome with pride? I had pictured it all and every time I smiled. Now, I realize, I likely will not hit that goal with Scott and Molly standing by my side. More realistically, that goal is going to come the first or second week I am at the Biggest Loser Resort, standing next to a trainer that I just met, in a land far, far away. And that makes me a little sad. So I guess I just need to bust ass the next four weeks and get as close as I can to that magic number in hopes that my last Tuesday weigh-in could bring the joy of sharing this monumental moment with my trainer and best friend. If not, I will just have to savor the moment on my own and be sure to send them a picture mail of the scale from Malibu.
Secondly, there is the big reveal. My return from BLR. Last night, watching the contestants return home to their family for 18 days…the emotions were overwhelming. Happiness and tears and wondering, how will my big reveal go? Will everyone be there? Will they cry? Will I look amazing when I walk in the door? Will I take their breath away? What will I be wearing? Will my muffin-top be gone? Will they be able to see that I am a new and improved Lyndee 2.0…stronger, faster, leaner and totally bad ass? I know I’m going to be so emotional on April 29
th when I finally get to see and hug my family and friends after four weeks away. Someone please remember to bring the tissues.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Yummy hungry girl cupcake for snack today. Easy to make and yummy to taste. We swapped the strawberry preserves for fresh  blackberries and raspberries. Then topped with light whipped cream.

Also, how are my abs still so sore from the workout Sunday? 100 dumbbell toe touch crunches should not plague me every time I laugh. Which is often!

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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Doing it Iowa style

People say that Iowa is boring.  I know this because I used to say it all the time.  I don’t know if it’s wiser with age or the journey to a healthier Lyndee but I have learned that there is plenty to do in Iowa.  Especially if one is looking for fun, healthy activities.  Don’t believe me?  Case in point…
Living History Farms Run
Urban Assault bike ride
Iowa Sports Foundation Mud Run
Drake Relays
Des Moines Marathon
Dam to Dam
Red Flannel Run
Warrior Dash
Race for the Cure

Those are just around Des Moines but throughout the state, the list goes on and on.  If you’re like me you had no idea of all the things you could find to do that would involve being active and having fun.  My idea of active in previous summers was sitting on a tube, floating down the river with a cold drink in my hand.  The wonderful news is you don’t have to pay to do an organized activity either if that’s not your cup of tea.  Iowa has thousands of miles of bike and walking trails!  What else?  Amazing parks, rivers, lakes and open area to frolic about in.  Personally, I’m a huge fan of Gray’s Lake! Being active can be playing catch at the park with your kids, throwing together a game of kickball in the empty neighborhood lot, riding your bike to the store down the street.  Anything that gets you up and moving.  Remember, no matter how slow you are going, you’re still lapping everyone that is on the couch!!

If you are looking for some organized activities, reach out to your local parks and rec and see what kind of classes and leagues they offer.  Start a walking group with friends or family.  And check out for tons of listing of races, triathlons and fun for all ages and activity levels.  For me, completely a 5K wasn’t about winning the race.  I just wanted to finish! And each time I try to better my personal race time.  Also, many 5K’s offer 1 mile fun run’s or walks too.  The possibilities are only limited by your lack of effort.  Take advantage of all the things that Iowa has to offer in helping you find a healthier you. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Just try it!

I’ve always been a picky eater.  Shocking since I’m a fatty, right?  I’ve never been picky about whether to have pizza, a burger, fried chicken, two more brownies, etc.  Picky as in, there were a lot of foods that I thought I hated but I had never tried.  I just somehow knew I didn’t like them.  On my journey to healthier living I have really tried to expand my tastebuds.  There are still things I don’t enjoy like raw tomato, broccoli, cauliflower or onion, but cook those babies up and I can eat them on almost anything now.  That is quite a victory for that girl that used to throw a tantrum if I even saw an onion near my plate.  I told Molly back when we started that I would be more open to trying things and I have.  Even found some things I really love like peppers, spaghetti squash, salmon, protein shakes, pita bread, reduced fat ice cream, spinach and so on.  I thought I didn’t like these things because they were foreign to me but they were great once I gave them a chance!
Last night a friend of ours was cutting up some radishes and Molly and I both said we hadn’t tried them before even though I, again, was sure I didn’t like them.  In my head they tasted like a cross between raw potato and an onion.  So we tried them and lo and behold, they weren’t that bad at all.  I mean, I’m not going to start lugging a bag around in my purse to snack on 24/7 but would no longer be opposed to grabbing one off of a salad bar or putting in a variety bag of mixed veggies for an afternoon snack.  Even if I hadn’t liked it, what was the harm in trying?  Three seconds of a bad taste in my mouth? I mean, really.  Makes me wonder what I had always been so scared of when trying new foods.  Maybe I was scared I would actually like some of the healthier options?  Or I’m resistant to change and like my routine?  Not sure but it doesn’t matter now.  I’m breaking down that barrier between myself and healthier food options.  And I have to wonder, what else do I think I don’t like that I might really enjoy?  Could be an activity or sport, a type of clothing, a new shampoo.  Who knows.  But the best thing I can do is try new things and continue to explore my world.  I can’t be scared of what I don’t know.  I can try anything once.  And it’s nice to know that the improved Lyndee2.0 will!  What are you scared of?  Just try it!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Somedays it's easy to forget how strong you are

If only life were really like a TV show that ran a laugh track and problems were solved in 22 minutes.  Maybe that’s why I often miss working in entertainment.  The ending could always be rewritten.  In real life we all know that is not the case.  Something else happens though when we are faced with obstacles or tribulations.  Although we may not get to rewrite our endings, we can recreate our main character.  Some days when juggling a busy schedule of work, workouts, husband, step-children, family, friends, errands, cleaning, etc. we feel like we don’t have the strength or the stamina to get it all done.  It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and pressed for time.  Sometimes outside forces come crashing through your neat little life and twist it upside down like a tornado.  And all you can do is pick up the pieces and try to put your life back together again.  This weekend for me was one of extremes.  Friday I was on top of the world, floating on a cloud, without a care.  My face hurt from smiling. Sunday my world came screeching to a halt, my heart was broken and my eyes hurt from crying.  For a moment yesterday, I was lost and didn’t know how I could pick up the pieces and patch life back together again because I had forgotten how strong I was.  I had forgotten how much happiness I deserved to have.  Standing at the bottom of this mountain and looking up, I know it’s going to take a lot of work and dedication, just like so many things in life.  The difference is, today I’m not scared. When your world flips upside down, you just have to find a new way out of the hole.  Rewrite your character and remember that in all circumstances, you are the only thing you can control.  Be okay with that.  Embrace it and make the best of it.  Remind yourself everyday how strong you are and that nothing and no one can hold you back unless you let them.    

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I got this

Designed this for Molly, Melody and myself right before our triathlon but I found some inspiration in it today so thought I would share. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The day of love

It’s Valentine’s Day.  I have to admit, I pretty much loathe this holiday.  It’s a commercial marketing scam that brings in billions of dollars to exploit emotions and feelings that should be appreciated every day of the year.  Many people enjoy it and for that, happy Valentine ’s Day to you.  But many people feel crappy on this day, especially if they are single and that’s just sad to me.  You don’t have to have a significant other to feel of worth.  Celebrate your love of your friends or family or most importantly, today, celebrate your love of yourself!  And don’t just limit it to today. We should be celebrating ourselves every day. This is the year of you! 365 days of it.  Take that and run with it.  Embrace your strengths.  Count your blessings.  Be proud of your accomplishments, large and small.  Today, love yourself completely.  Push away negative thoughts when you look in the mirror.  Stop hiding behind material things.  Don’t tie yourself to a number.  Just take the day to be happy with who you are and think of ways to make yourself better each day.  You must love yourself before you can love or be loved completely by anyone else.  You don’t need anyone to buy you chocolate or flowers today.  That’s not a measure of love.  Reward yourself with something that makes you feel good.  Maybe a new outfit or pair of shoes.  Go for a walk with a friend.  Curl up on the couch with a good book or movie.  Whatever it is that makes you feel happy. Today, LOVE YOU.  It’s that simple. 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Be Prepared

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that knows me well to hear that I’ve already started packing for my trip.  I’ve sorted my workout clothes into “fits currently”, “a bit too snug right now” and “this will be great in 20 pounds” piles.  I’ve got a list of things to pack that seems to grow every day.  It started as the general recommended packing list from BLR and has grown exponentially.  It’s amazing the things we use in a one month span.  And knowing that I will not have a car or quick access to any stores, this girl has got to think ahead.  Luckily, I’m a big fan of the Boy Scout motto “Be Prepared” and I almost always am.  So the list is long and that’s fine.  But what’s hard is packing for the end of the trip.  I have no idea what size I will be mid-April.  I certainly can’t guess what I will be by the day I leave Malibu and return to Iowa.  It would be nice to have some clothes on that actually fit when I show up for my big reveal on the 29th.  I might have to take a pair of my too small jeans and some shirts with me.  And if I slide right by those sizes while I’m gone, I guess I’ll be coming home in draw string yoga pants or begging one of my friends in LA to run me to the closet Old Navy the day before I leave. 
One thing I am so looking forward to though?  A month of living in workout clothes! Hooray!  They are the most comfortable things in the world.  Sorry work, but no business casual for me for 30 days! Just comfy clothes, swimsuits and my tennis shoes.  *sigh* It will be glorious, even if these clothes are drenched in sweat, dirt, blood and tears every day.  That’s just fine by me. 

Friday, February 10, 2012

I like to move it, move it

The lady that set up my dates at BLR said to be as active as possible prior to arrival. I work out a minimum of 5 times a week as is but I figured I should step up my game a little bit so I don’t get destroyed at the resort. Last night after doing my cardio on the treadmill, Molly and I did Body Attach at the gym. It was awesome! The class description is ”A cardio combination of high and low impact moves designed to tone both the upper and lower body. Perfect for any fitness level and compliments any workout routine! The sports inspired floor combinations will provide just the right amount of intensity while the toning portion will shape the rest of your body.” After work today I’m doing a 5K on the treadmill (too stinking cold to go outside) and tonight I will do Insanity with my hubby. Tomorrow is a zumbathon. I can’t remember if it’s 2 or 3 hours but regardless, it will be fun and be a great burn. Also, this week I signed up for the Cops Against Cancer 12 hour Fitness Challenge. You get a team together and workout for 12 hours, competing against other teams. The really cool part? There will be six former Biggest Loser contestants there with us. Some of the teams will even have a BL contestant as their captain. Woo hoo! I don’t care if it’s Rebecca, Daniel, Shay, Sean, Bernie or mystery contestant. I plan to pick their brains and see if they can give me any tips for while I’m at the resort. Should be pretty awesome.

I hope you all have some plans for activity this weekend. Remember, no matter how slow you are going, you are still lapping everyone on the couch!! Get moving! Have a great weekend.

Thursday, February 9, 2012


I’ll be the first to admit, I’ve become a bit emotional in my old age.  Just ask my husband.  He can attest to the smallest things in the world making me cry.  Even very happy things.  I attribute this to a new appreciate for life that I’ve gained in the last 2 ½ years. With a dear loved ones untimely passing, I vowed that I would live every day to the fullest and seek to find the beauty and gift in each day.  Admittedly, some days are harder than others to keep my promise to him.  Then there are days that my heart is so overwhelmed with joy and blessings that I can’t help but cry.  I’ve had that feeling a lot in the last week.  The simple thought of what the day of my return from Fitness Ridge will be like creates a softball size lump in my throat and suddenly I’m batting back tears.  It doesn’t matter if I lose five pounds or 50 while I’m gone.  I will come back a champion because I went and I gave it my all.  And the look on the faces of my family and friends faces will be priceless.  The feeling of their arms around me again will be somewhat close to heaven on Earth. 

Molly and I spent last night getting interviewed by a very nice lady at the Des Moines Register and there was one constant theme we kept coming back to.  How lucky we are.  How much love we have.  How much support surrounds us.  How blessed our journey has been and continues to be.  In the parking lot afterwards we talked about how crazy this ride has been and how if someone would’ve told us 2 years ago that we would’ve come this far, refused to quit and touched other people’s lives, we would’ve laughed our big round asses off.  If they had said we would be recognized for losing weight we probably would’ve choked on the pizza we were shoving in our mouths.

So it’s no surprise today when I started watching videos of former contestants talking about their visits to BLR, I started crying.  Not only for what they said and what they took away from the experience but seeing the classes, hikes, trainers and campus and knowing that I will be there before I know it.  And like those that have gone before me, I will leave there as a new person whose life has been touched and will never be the same.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The BEST of both worlds

It’s funny how when I say I’m going to Biggest Loser Fitness Ridge Resort (BLR) people assume I’m going to be on the show.  When I tell them I’m not, I can see a look of disappointment on their face.  “So you’re not going to be on TV?”  No, I’m not going to be on TV.  But I can honestly say that this is the best possible scenario for me!  I love Biggest Loser and it has changed my life but I feel that she show has lost its heart and what made it so amazing.  It’s no longer a feel good show that focuses on inspiring others and making you feel all warm and fuzzy and near tears every episode.  It’s become a soap opera filled with drama and negativity.  This is not what made this show special from the start and not why so many people fell in love with it.  Having four weeks at BLR is perfect and I will tell you why. 

It’s longer than some contestants get to stay.  I’m guaranteed four full weeks.  No one can vote me off in elimination.  There are no challenges. I don’t have to share a room with a stranger or play any games or watch my back.  I have four weeks to focus on ME! Which is the point of the contest.  The Year of You.  And that’s just what this will be for me.  Four weeks of fitness and nutrition education and finding the strength in myself to persevere.  I’m not sad I won’t meet Bob or Dolvett.  I think they are great trainers but the trainer doesn’t make your success.  I do! So it doesn’t matter what activity or trainer or how many hours I will be sweating my butt off.  This is all on my shoulders.  I have no doubt I will not only succeed in losing weight but shatter so many emotional walls that I have built up over the years. Will I miss my family and friends and trainer Scott?  Of course! I can’t even fathom how much.  But another perk of BLR over being on the show?  I can have my laptop and phone and talk to people at night when I get back to my room.  I will not only have the support of everyone at BLR, but I can still pull from the love of my family and friends if I’m having a bad day or needing some extra support.  It is perfect in every way for the goals I want to accomplish and also to celebrate how far I have come.  I couldn’t ask for anything more.  Well, except to take Molly with me but I know she will be here with Scott kicking some serious tail as well. 

Some have asked me how I could just leave or “abandon” my family and work for a month.  Yes, they have used the word abandon.  But that’s not what I’m doing.  I have spent most of my life trying to please and take care of others.  This is one month for me.  And taking this month for me will make me a better wife, step-mom, sister, daughter, friend and co-worker.  I truly believe that because if I can find some inner happiness, that will flow into all my relationships and every aspect of my life.  I’ve always played the happy-go-lucky fat party girl.  There were times I really believed I was happy.  But you don’t get to be 306 pounds by being happy and you can’t pretend it doesn’t have a negative effect on your life.  It is time to face my demons and strive to become a better person.  If I can’t truly love myself, I can’t love everyone around me the way I should.

Another perk of this amazing gift? Making new friends.  The other winners and I have been in constant communication regarding our blessings and this opportunity. I have found a wonderful support system within a group of 10 strangers that are starting to feel like family.  I can only imagine how strong the bond between us will be when we all finish our month stay.  Only we can understand the feelings that are raging through us since the day we got the news and it’s so nice to have them to share it with and bounce ideas and ask silly questions.  I hope that one day we can all come together, face to face.  Their excitement and dedication motivates and inspires me every day and for that I am so thankful. 

53 days and I’m going back to Cali…

Monday, February 6, 2012

In the words of Charlie Sheen...WINNING!

Do you ever get the feeling that anything is possible?  It’s been a long time since I felt like that but for the last week, I can’t help but embrace the idea.  Tuesday, January 31st I received a call that changed my life.  I won a month at Biggest Loser Fitness Ridge Resort in Malibu, California.  I have battled weight issues all my life.  I am down 90 pounds from my heaviest when I moved back from LA.  I still have 50-60 pounds to lose until I hit my goal weight.  I’m still in complete shock that I won.  I think about it all day long and can’t help but smile.  What a blessing and a dream come true.  The possibilities while I’m at the resort are endless.  I know I will learn so much!  And I realized, if I lose 63 more pounds, I will have lost HALF of myself!  50%!  Before, that number would’ve seemed daunting and out of reach.  Now, it seems like a wonderful goal and I know I can do it.  I believe again.  And I’m so excited and happy.  I have had many blessings in my journey to a healthier Lyndee but winning this contest is the first time in a long time that I have really believed that I earned it.  That I deserve something so amazing.  I am going to take full advantage of this gift and make sure to pay it forward.  If I can help motivate someone else, then I am "winning" in so many ways.