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Feb 9 2017: Today was a great day!! I killed my workout at shes fit, beast mode leg day with interval runs at the end (didn’t get as fast as I normally can but I have the never ending plugged nose and it was after leg day). I can do 5 sets of 12-15 on the leg press with 380lbs (maxed out!), 5 sets of 12-15 thigh abducter with 250lbs (maxed out!), and the thigh adducter with 205lbs!! I also did leg extensions and curls and finished off with dealifts…I am limited with what I can do because of my arm, my weights are low if I have to hold them so I use a lot of machines for my legs, they hold form and I can use real weights with them. I am really hoping that my rheumatoid will go into remission soon so I can start doing weight squats again, man how I miss squats!!

beast  leg press

I have definitely noticed a difference in my body since I started lifting more weights and doing less cardio…I am going to start upping my cardio soon, but I love what lifting has done to my booty lol.

cardio vs squats …truth!

I also went to the Dierks Bentley concert with my mom and aunt tonight…he put on one hell of a show, I sang like a crazy lady and had a hoarse voice by the time the last song was done.

mom concert…yup, plaid for the win!!

Created on 2017-02-14 10:22:05

Feb 7 2017: Ugh, another week…another basically nonresistant weight loss! I am getting super frustrated with not losing weight like so many of the other girls in this challenge. I go to the gym 5+ times a week and bust my butt every time, I have been meal prepping, drinking so much water that some days I feel like my kidneys are floating and yet I cant seem to get results on the scale, GRRR!

In my frustration I remembered that my friend Mandy (she does figure competitions) has talked about the huge differences she has seen in her body while training even though her weight stayed the same

mandy   mandy 2.0


(pictures shared with permission) I found this very motivating, and it really puts things into perspective…granted my body changes are not this noticeable (yet) but if I stay persistent then good things will happen.

Created on 2017-02-14 09:42:31

Feb 3 2017: The boy met the parents today…I probably shoulda warned him that my dad is bit of a pitbull (the restaurant literally bought him a beer because the waitress felt bad for him), but he did great. I cant give Jay enough props…he has been such a trooper supporting me through the challenge, meeting my parents, and just being all around great. It’s a pretty new relationship and apparently this process can put a lot of strain on relationships (I’ve heard a few people say this) but we just keep getting stronger. I know I have talked about him a lot but I just think he’s been so great! He comes to the gym with me, praises me when I’m trying to do my food prep (tells me I’m a good cook even though I’m definitely mediocre), and makes me feel loved for just being me. Some people feel the need to lose weight or change for the people they are with, I have been battling my weight and self esteem issues for as long as I can remember and I’m not going to lie when Jay first wanted to hangout with me I couldn’t figure out why, why would this buff stud want to be with me and then we started talking about beach vacations and all I could think about was what other people would say seeing my chubby but with this jacked guy in bathing suits (eek)

all sizes

but he makes me feel so beautiful and that really helps me focus on my goals for this challenge. My main goal for this challenge is to learn to love myself and feel good the way I am, feel confident in my skin every step of the way

jay and i 2                jay and me

don’t get me wrong I want to lose weight…but I mostly want to be healthy and happy.

say and think

Created on 2017-02-14 09:20:11

Feb 2 2017: I want to send a shout out to one of my best girls…it has been awesome getting to experience the highs and lows and overwhelming and awesome and new experiences with my girl Tara, we met through our exes and got each other in the breakups lol. She has been there for a lot of highs and lows in my life (relationship stuff, family illnesses, personal struggles), and I’ve seen her through the same (relationship stuff, birth of her amazing daughter, custody stuff) and now we get to share this. We have been working at losing weight for a while, try to motivate each other to get our workouts in, share good recipes (despite my crazy pickiness), and walk as much as possible. We enjoy walking at mill lake together whenever we can, its 2.3km of calm water, bird watching and talking out our life stresses.


tara walk tara walk 2


We do more then just walk…we also yoga, shop, coffee date, race (we successfully did 2 tough mudders as well as multiple smaller races) and concert together…


tara yoga tara shopping

tara coffee  tara concert3 TARA MUDDER

…I guess you could say we live a pretty eventful friendship!


Created on 2017-02-14 07:13:29

Edited on 2017-02-14 07:14:39

Jan 31 2017: Well, I wasn’t able to swap my shift at work so I didn’t get to stay for the meeting (extra lame because I missed out on the tanning stuff…and as you can see from the picture of Jay and I in my Jan 28th post, I need a tan lol), but I was able to get there to weigh in before shift. I lost 2lbs this week, I know it doesn’t seem like a lot (especially compared to what the other girls are losing), but its a huge victory for me. I have been struggling SO much with my limited ability in the gym due to the rheumatoid and the prednisone that 2lbs is big for me.

noboy sees the scale

Thank goodness for besties!! Since I wasn’t able to stay for the meeting I missed the speaker from FABUTAN, but since I am lucky enough to be doing this with the BFF she picked up the handouts for me so I will still be able to get my tan on!! Yay for no more pale skin!


Created on 2017-02-14 04:31:04

Jan 28 2017: Gung Hay Fat Choi (I think thats right…happy Chinese New Year) Man I work a lot…Just finished a set of way too many shifts in a row, this bit of time off was so nice. Got to have a much needed date night with the boy, we went for dinner (I had a half cheat meal…chicken breast and deep fried pickles, sooo worth the fat and calories lol) and saw the movie ‘Split’ (the main actor did a great job but the movie was not good overall, weird plot, lame ending…in my opinion at least), then (big step) got to meet the boys mom :) She’s so sweet and was so welcoming, such a good night. And I also got to go for pedicures with my longest girl friend, belated Christmas get together…such a spoiled girl I am #workhardplayhard

date a nurse      spa day

Before date night I hit the gym with Jay (aka the boy). I love getting to go to the gym with him, he is so smart in there!! When I go with him not only do I feel supported in my fitness journey but I also get to share the gym with him, something he is very passionate about. He teaches me new exercises and gives me tips and I get to check him out while he does his thing, all in all a great way to start a date day lol.

beauty and the beast

(sorry ladies, he’s all mine…those arms though)


Created on 2017-02-08 08:52:53

Jan 24 2017: Well, that was frustrating…I busted my butt this week, hit over 100g of protein everyday and I think I drank more water this week then I normally do in a month, killed it at the gym, but only lost 0.2lbs…some people poop more then that, ugh! I’m not sure what more I can do to lose weight as fast as the other girls, maybe amputating a limb?! (clearly kidding).

Thank goodness for my logical and supportive boyfriend, he successfully talked me off of the ‘breakdown and eat junk food’ ledge and reminded me that the best thing to do is keep doing what I’m doing and stop comparing myself to others because my situation is different then theirs.

puppy love Thanks to this guy for keeping me on track!

Created on 2017-02-05 09:39:57

Jan 23 2017: When I was training for my marathon I got to a point where I was no longer losing weight so I started cutting my calories (a lot…too much) I was super active and my old school mentality told me that if you are “moving more” and not losing weight you need to “eat less” because lets be real here, no heavy girl is gonna look in the mirror and say ” I’m fat because I eat too little”. There is nothing healthy about eating 900 calories a day while running 60km or more a week and yet I thought I was doing everything right…at least until the random binge days and fatigue, the muscle aches even after short runs or at rest, the presyncopal episodes during workouts, and the occasional hypoglycemic episode. This was a horrible time for me, I gained 20lbs training for the marathon and felt awful. I stopped running after the marathon when I realized what I was doing to myself (again…slow learner…I’m an RN and probably shoulda caught onto the signs way sooner, but hey, denial is a magical thing) and spent the better part of 2 years working on rebuilding a healthy relationship with food and exercise.

I was feeling so good for the first part of the week, but today not so much…Today was the last day of my 3 day shake challenge…its amazing how 3 days can bring your mind back to all of these thoughts despite working for 2 years to overcome all of the negative food control issues and being pretty convinced you were good, between that bringing me back to the above head space and a yoga class making me feel incredibly weak and broken because it was all about movements I can’t do because I can’t put weight on my arm (I am not bendy enough to swing my legs through my arms while in a downward facing dog on my elbows…yes, watching me try was probably as awkward as it reads lol).

yoga haha


I am definitely going to go back to focusing on increasing my protein intake and going to gym like normal…I love the gym! I love getting back to running, interval sprints are my currant fave cardio! Leg day is my jam…I can confidently say I crush leg day! I can max out the leg press and basically feel like a beast. Lifting weights makes me feel strong and more confident, I’ll stick to what I know and like…I’ll try yoga again when my arm is more functional or I am confident that not being able to do things because of medical reasons will not make me feel weak and like a failure, but until then im keeping it beast mode :)

beast mode

Created on 2017-02-03 09:55:11

Jan 20 2017: I feel awesome!! I have focused on my food and water intake and hit my goal for all 3 days so far. I have more energy, I feel stronger through my workouts and have been sleeping better. Who knew that getting my protein in was all I needed to get a solid sleep despite the night shifts, only took me 6 years of shift work to figure this out (slow learner apparently).  

Created on 2017-02-01 09:30:45

Jan 18 2017: Ugh, more bad health news…I went to the TB clinic for followup on my skin test and because of the medications I am on for my Rheumatoid Arthritis and my exposures to TB at work (ER Nurse) I have to start a 9 month course of treatment even though my chest xray was negative. This means lots of blood work and no alcohol for 9 months, the up side is no booze will be good for the challenge, the bad news is I go to Las Vegas for my birthday in April. I make jokes (my way of coping with things) but I had a bit of a breakdown to my mom and boyfriend about it. I was supposed to go to Honduras with habitat for humanity but had to cancel the trip because my Rheumatoid is not in remission yet (like the Doctor hoped) and now this. I need to be on the TB meds for at least 2 months before I can start a second line of treatment for my Rheumatoid but I see the specialist in 6 weeks and the plan is that if Im not in remission I am going to be started on another medication, the breakdown was due to thinking this could be delayed, I am SO over being in pain and having my work and workout life limited by this stupid problem, I can deal with pain but I cant deal with not being able to lift anything or straighten my arm…you have no idea how hard it is to do effective CPR in a code blue when only one arm straightens fully. 

goodbye booze …except this years Vegas stories apparently…

Created on 2017-02-01 09:15:03

Jan 17 2017: Well…today was measurements and body composition scale day, that was fun (not)! I found out that if I didnt have my J-Lo booty my measurements say I would basically be a rectangle and I have less muscle then I expected since despite being heavy I have always been active and enjoy lifting weights. We also had a seminar about protein and water intake…that was eyeopening to say the least, I get about half of what I should be getting in both, no wonder my muscle mass is lower then I thought! this weeks challenges are to get at least 100g of protein and half our body weight in ounces of water for 3 days and then we were given a 3 day sample pack of herbalife. I dont know if I have ever had 100g of protein in a day, let alone 3 days in a row…this will be challenging, Id keep writing but I need to drink some water and apparently I need to meal prep A LOT of chicken if Im going to stand a chance at hitting this weeks challenge goals lol.

Created on 2017-02-01 09:11:13

Hey everybody,

Welcome to my blog. This is where you can follow me as I go through the total makeover challenge. I applied for the challenge for many reasons, 1) I have struggled with weight since I was a child 2) I successfully lost weight 8 and a half years ago but didnt keep it off because I couldnt change how I saw myself, its incredibly hard to look in the mirror when you wear a size 7 jean and still see a size 22 body 3) I ended up with an eating disorder while training for a marathon (the first and probably the last one I will ever do) and had to really focus on changing how I looked at food and weight 4) I finally got back to a place where I felt I could get back to the weight loss grind and then started having a lot of multi joint pain that made exercise increasingly more difficult, when I finally went to the doctor to get it investigated I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis and have been on a long course of prednisone (a medication that causes increased appetite, weight gain, difficulty losing weight, moon face, water retention…all the things that you dont want when trying to lose weight).

Jan 15 2017: Today was the official top 30 meet and greet, and weigh in (I dont want to talk about that…lets just say I cant believe I let it get so out of hand again). Today we got an overview of the process and heard past contestants and board members speak about previous challenge years. After seeing how emotional some people got when talking about their journeys while participating in the challenge and after participating I am SO excited to be a part of this!! I originally signed up thinking this challenge would be a good way to kick start my weight loss and give me tools to set me up for success with it…but now I see that this is more then that. I am now excited to see how this challenge can help change the way I see myself, maybe I can start to see my successes in life when I look in the mirror rather then seeing the number on the scale and just seeing all my failures….maybe I can get to a point where I can be happy with the body I have now rather then focus on the body I lost and the body I want…maybe I can learn to stop comparing myself to others and just be satisfied with me! After going through all the stations and getting a glimpse of what the challenge entails, Im not going to lie it was a little overwhelming, but I am excited to take this on and give the process my all. Heres to the beginning of the new me 

“Why do you keep on staring? That mirror, mirror, it ain’t fair at all (mmh)
Dress sizes can’t define, don’t let the world decide what’s beautiful”-Lauren Alaina (Road less travelled)

Created on 2017-02-01 09:08:23