Milestones

What a Year!

What a difference a year makes!

March 20th marked 1 year since I stepped in my gym.  1 year.  This anniversary is beyond special to me.  I have NEVER kept with any sort of fitness regimen for more than 2-3 months.  Ever.  This is a big deal.

When I made the decision to start working out, it was really by chance that I found my gym.  My friend told me about this class she took and said the first class was free.  I clearly remember my first class, we had double unders.  Being my first class, I had no idea what a double under was, but I could do single jumps.  It was those jumps that really opened my eyes.  I had such a hard time jumping rope.  I resorted to running with it like I was an elementary school kid on the playground.  It was embarrassing, but I wanted to do what I could.  That was the wake up call.  Who can’t jump rope?  I should of been able to do it, but I was so out of shape that there was just no way.  Now, I can do double unders! ( It has been a while, but I have done them!) It was there I made the decision to stick to it and it has been one of the best decisions of my life.

It saved my life.  If I kept going down that path, who knows where I would be, glad I didn’t find out.

I was a size 22/24 and climbing.  I am now a size 16!

I have lost 38 pounds!

Honestly, when I envisioned this milestone, I thought I would be this skinny little thing down 100 lbs.  Obviously, an unrealistic expectation.  I think I am doing just fine where I am and moving along.  I love working out and it has become part of my routine.  I crave it!

As corny as it sounds, I have grown so much as a person this year.  I am breaking old habits that derailed myself before.  This is just as important to me as the physical working out.  Especially for my kids to see.  I want my kids to see that I don’t give up.  I don’t want them to ever give up on something they believe in and what better example than myself?

It has been a journey of ups and downs.  I have progressed so much from where I started.  Hit goals .  And ran my first 5k.  A feeling that was so overwhelming I can’t even describe it.  I have run myself off track and crashed my wagon, but I got a new wagon and kept going instead of letting it end the journey.

I ” Just Keep Swimming”

” Just Keep Swimming” is such a simple phrase, but if you think about it, it means so much.  It keeps me going, these 3 simple words.  I cherish them!  They have become such a big part of this journey.  

In this first year I have had ups and downs, falls and tears, laughs and cheers.  It has been amazing.  I am so thankful for my support system who no matter what didn’t give up on me despite my track record of giving up on myself.  Who still tell me they are proud of me.  I am beyond grateful for my truly amazing coaches, Holly and Jane.  Their encouragement is mind blowing.  They make every class a joy I look forward to.  They have created a community full of compassionate, caring encouraging people that I am so grateful for.  My gym buddies – oh boy, these folks are the absolute best around.  Team Bad Ass! They inspire me to be better and do better – and they are hilarious!

And the blog community – you guys are awesome! It is so great to read everyone’s stories and the feedback we give each other.  We are pretty awesome!

It has been a great journey so far – good thing I am still on it.  I look forward to what the next year will bring.  And I will post some Progress updates soon too.

 

Here are some of my favorite pics from the past year  :

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This is me doing my plank! I am the big gal in the pink shirt in the front .  Photo Credit : Holly Leonard, BeFit Health and Wellness

" Before " March 2013
” Before ” March 2013
September 2013
September 2013
Victorious at the lake!
Victorious at the lake!
My first 5 K!!!
My first 5 K!!!

MegB&A

 

 

 

How has the last year been for you? How is your journey going? I would love to read all about it!

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time out of your day to read my rants and raves.  I am glad so many of us are sharing the same experiences.

 

 

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Milestones, Things to Think About

Getting Back Into The Groove

I have been dreading this post.  Dreading it.  Why? I have to admit my failure and I have to put it in writing forever making the words real and alive.   So yes kids, I have failed.  But failed what exactly?  Let’s explore that shall we?

The past couple of months, I have been in a funk.  Yes, I still went to class, but for different reasons, not as many as I would of liked.  Different things were going on in my life, stressful things and at the end of the day, I was just plain ol’ exhausted.  Mentally and Physically.

I strayed from my path.  Like, really strayed. Like, 300 miles from the path.  I didn’t take care of myself as I should have. I ate crap. I drank crap.  And in the end, you guessed it, I felt like crap.

I gained some weight back and this is no surprise, but its the most painful part of my taking care of myself sabbatical.  This month, March 20th to be exact, will be my 1 year anniversary at Befit.  I dreamt of this day. I would be skinny.  I would have some beautiful pictures taken. I would feel good about myself.   I could inspire others.  I would make my family proud, and most of all, I would be proud of myself.  So yes, of course, as I traveled on this journey, some of these realistically would not be attainable. Such as the skinny part.  But as I go along, I was okay with that, knowing I would get there.  I was progressing, feeling good,  losing weight and getting fit.  I really let myself down.  Horribly.  And this is what hurts the most.  I did this to myself.   I Did This. No one else. I was a one gal train wreck .

I signed up for the 60 day challenge at my gym.  I half assed it. Not proud of it, but I didn’t dedicate myself to my goals as I should have.  And here we are near the end and I have no goals accomplished.  Again, my own fault.  And it stinks.

So, you see, I have failed.  Failed myself.

Then I got hit with the stomach bug.  2 days resting,  it was a good jump start for some weight loss, lol.  And honestly, that is what it became, a jump start.  When the bug finally left me, I felt renewed.

Then, this thing happened. Weather intentional or not, it made a difference. My coaches changed the gyms cover picture on Facebook. And who is there in a victory pose? ME.   It was taken the day I finished my first run without stopping.  It was an amazing feeling.  Seeing the picture, I was flooded with all the emotion from that day and all I have accomplished.   Maybe it was cause they  knew I was in a funk, maybe it was cause the picture fit the area needed, maybe it was divine intervention, but in any case, thank you to my coaches Holly and Jane for giving me the extra boost I needed.  Just another reason why my gym and coaches are amazing.

Now more than ever, I need to Just Keep Swimming !

Today it is a new week. It is a new day.  I started off awesome.  I took the hubs over to the gym here where I live.  It was empty which was nice, and they had barbells! I worked on my cleans,  my split jerks( I love those) , my back squats and even threw in some dead lifts.  I am guessing the bar was 45 lbs, making my work at 65 lbs, except the deadlifts, up to 135 on those. I didn’t want to over do it.  The cool part of all of this, was showing my husband different things I do.  I showed him different things with the dumb bells that we do in class. Snatches, my fav.  Then I showed him the get up sit ups we did the other day.  And threw some man makers at him.  He actually liked them! Weird, I know.  In any case, it felt great working out, and it felt great being able to share with my family.

I am really looking forward to class tomorrow. I am taking a crack at 14.2.  Excited and scared.  Not expecting much, but I am going to give it my all.

Getting back into the groove and it feels good.  Shaking off the past and screw ups and moving forward.

It’s also time for the Weekly One More!

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My Weekly One More is to be a better me.  I need to be better.  We all have something we can improve on.  Let’s take it and run with it.

How about you? How have you been doing? Would love to hear about what everyone is up to? Share with us!

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Milestones

The Weekly One More 2/16/14

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Happy Sunday Everyone!

I know last week, I was a slacker and there was no Weekly One More.  Sorry folks, but there has been a lot going on in my life lately.  In fact, this has inspired today’s post.  This journey is as much mental as it is physical.   For me, I have had so many issues with body image  and been so negative about my weight for so long, it became who I was.   I would say I hated the way I look, I hated what I was doing to myself, but wouldn’t get off my ass to actually do something.  I would get going good for 2 months, then something would happen and I would allow it to derail me.

I am a very emotional person.  It is something I am working on, I don’t mean being emotional, but rather how I handle my emotions.  Instead of being a blubbering mess when the shit hits the fan, I am trying to calm myself down and focus on the positives.  I think I am getting better at this.  I hope anyways.

Recently  different things happened that made me really start thinking about things and putting things into perspective.

A dear friend of mine lost her grandmother last week, it broke my heart. She was devoted to her grandmother as I am to my grandparents.    My grandparents turned 89 and 90 years old and celebrated their 66 th wedding anniversary the past few weeks.  How Lucky am I ? Seriously?  I am so blessed.  For the past few years, my grandmother has decided that she wanted steaks to celebrate.  This is New England, its a bit snowy in the winter.  But she doesn’t care, she goes and gets a steak for everyone and we cook them up on the grill.  Winter Cookout to celebrate their birthdays and anniversary.  My Gram is a fierce woman.  Strong  and knows what she wants.  If she wants a steak on the grill at her house in the winter, you are damn right she is gonna get it.  My family is so blessed they are still here and even more so that they still have their whits about them.  I cherish them every moment of every day.

My Grampy enjoying the summer
My Grampy enjoying the summer
My Amazing Grammy
My Amazing Grammy

My mother’s health issues have created an issue again. I know I have talked about them here before.  My mother has been through so much and it pains me so much to see her go through anything else.  I am at the point where I am not upset, but angry .  I struggle with the why.  Why can’t she just be healthy and do what she wants to do?  Why?  GOD, I get so pissed.  But, she is here .  She is a crazy goof ball and I cherish her every moment of every day.

Some of our very dear friends are going through some things right now, and while I won’t elaborate for sake of their privacy, I ask that you send your prayers their way.  Good friends are hard to find and I cherish mine every moment of every day.

Do you get them theme here?

This weeks Weekly One More is Cherish Your Loved Ones Every Moment of Every Day

No matter what your journey is, you cannot get their without a support system and without people by your side.   Let them know you care about them and the difference they make in your life.  Give them a shout out.  Give them a hug.  Let them know you care.

I can only hope that you all are lucky enough to have people around you that rock as much as my people do.  And if you don’t, you know what? I will be your people.  Here to support and encourage .

Shout out to my People: My husband, my kids, my parents, my grandparents, my sisters, my bros in law, my niece and nephew, my sis in law, my aunts, my cousins, my friends, my coaches, and my gym buddies, The WOD Crew , Team Badass.  And my blog buddies – this is an amazing community we have here.  I love chatting with all of you!

I am who I am because of all of these people.  And honestly, I would love to name them all, but that would take a while, lol.  You all know who you are.  I cherish you all.

I hope you take up the challenge this week.

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Milestones, Things to Think About

2014 Goals

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I figured I would do a goal post, lol…

I like putting my thoughts down and I thought a list I could refer to would be good.  So here goes:

*Lose total of 100 lbs by the end of the year   – Not so sure this is really attainable, but I would love to be down 100 from where I started. 62 lbs to go !

*Run at least (3) 5k’s – and get my times down by at least 5 minutes – already signed up for 1!

*Get out of plus size clothes! – This is a big one for me, I really would love to fit comfortably in clothes without having to shop in a special section.

*Be able to do walking quad stretches – This is one thing that keeps eluding  me .  I fucking hate it – I want to be able to do this so badly.  I am really frustrated that I can’t do this yet.  I have to keep at it. This one WILL Happen this year – fo sho.

*Increase my box for box jumps – I am currently on the 12″ box, sometimes with plates on them.

* Plank for 2 minutes – This is going to be  a difficult one

* Get off the tan band for pull ups – I have got to get stronger and better at pull ups

* Deadlift 200 lbs  – I am up to 150 lbs, so another 50 I think should be doable by the end of the year, right? We’ll see.

* Lose the back rolls – almost there!

* Be comfortable in my own skin – So, yes, more mental than physical, but still a goal.

* Spartan Race November 2014 – I want to be ready and not make a fool of myself

* Wear white pants without someone following me with a projector thinking they have found a moving drive in

* Master Double Unders – I can do them, but I want to be able to do more than 20 in a row

* Master Hand Stand Push Ups – I can do the handstand, gotta master the push up

* Improve my lunges and squats – yes I can do these, but there is always room for improvement

* Climb the rope! – I want to climb it, not just dangle at the bottom of it.

* Be Happy with myself –  Now this one my friends, will be so much harder to attain than any of the stuff listed here, but perhaps it is the most important to me.  I really do want to be happy with myself and happy with who I am .

This journey is so much more than a journey – It is a lifestyle and a life changer.  I am committed to keep going and make myself the best me I can be.  I know it sounds corny, but its true.  I gotta Keep Swimming!

Keep checking back throughout the year to see how I do!

How about you? What are you goals for this year? I’d love to read them!

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Milestones

Progress Update !

Here we are in December.  It has been 9 months since I started working out. I have had an amazing year.  I have done things and accomplished things I never dreamed possible.  I have made some truly amazing friendships.  I have grown so much.  I believe in myself.  I was not able to say that at the beginning of the year.  I am proud of myself!

Well, I have mentioned it before, I was the lucky recipient of some hand me downs courtesy of my cousins bestie.  There was this dress in there that I loved, you know, a fancy dress.  Didn’t know where I would wear it, or even if it would fit.  So, yesterday we had ” Pre- Christmas” It was just a small get together but I figured I would give the dress a go.

I thought this was a good time to do a progress update.  So here goes:

MegB&A

I felt amazing in this dress.  I don’t know why.  Maybe because it zipped the first time without a struggle, maybe because I did not need to wear any ” Suck me in” undergarments, I think it was just because I looked good!

Holy moly! I am saying I looked good – you are darn right!

I am the living embodiment of hard work paying off.

So lets crunch the numbers :

 To Date Weight Loss : 38.7 lbs!!!!!

Present Size : 16  – down 4 sizes!

Hard Work People is the ONLY way to get results that last .  I am so thankful for the blessings this year has brought me.  Gotta Keep Swimming!

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Little Moments

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It has been a busy week, seriously, when is it not? Anyways – Big News! to me, at least ……

I DID AN UNASSISTED QUAD STRETCH!

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Not Me, lol

 

I know for just about everyone this is not even remotely a big deal – but for me – IT IS GINORMOUS!  I have not been able to do a quad stretch since I started classes.  Every time in the warm ups when we do walking quad stretches, I run over to the rig and pull my leg behind me with a band.  I hate it.  I hate that I can’t do them after all this time. So, the other night in class we were doing them at the end of class stretch, and I was able to do it on my right side! Hooray! And yes, just the right side, not the left, but its a start! I will take it! It is these little moments that mean more to me than anything.  The little victories.  The non scale victories.  It feels good, real good.  What about you, any non scale victories to share with us?

Onto my classes this week.  In addition to Monday’s class, I also went to class on Wednesday and Thursday.  Here is how I did:

Wednesday

800 m run

5 Front Squats 60 lbs

200 m run

10 Pull ups

400 m run

15 KB swings 35 lbs

800 m run

5  Front Squats 60 lbs

200 m run

10 Pull ups

So, this WOD was rough.  It was supposed to be 3 rounds in 35 minutes, no way that was happening. As you can see, I got through 1 2/3 rounds.   I dread and love the running workouts.  I will say , I feel my running is getting better, more consistent.  I am definitely better at the beginning of the runs, now I just need to keep it going.  More Little Moments to be proud of.  More realizations.  I also went up in my weight for my front squat.  Only 5 lbs, but it is still going up.  Proud of that.

ThursdayTABATA 20:10:8

We did a Tabata workout on Thursday, 20 seconds each movement, 10 seconds rest , 8 rounds for each movement.  For my own knowledge, I kept track of my reps, so here is how I did over the 8 rounds.

Ring Rows  50

Burpees 17

Lateral Hop Squats 72

Front Plank

Sandbag Sprints

Grasshoppers

I struggled the most with the plank as usual.  I think I would of been better off just staying up during the rest than starting and stopping.  Planks are so mental.  I need to zone out to take my mind of the fact that I am holding up so much weight.  Grasshoppers I find to be fun as long as its a good song playing with a good beat, makes it so much easier.

Another interesting thing that happened this week was a conversation I had with some co-workers today.  We started talking about weight loss and one of them asked if I have heard of Cambogia.  Yes, I have.  And from what I gather, this is the next crazy  herbal supplement  craze, it is a fat buster and you never need to exercise. ( Now, I have not tried this myself, so I cannot say if it works or not.)  I told them that I have tried it all, and yes, it took me years, but there are no quick fixes, no pills, it is HARD WORK.  Plain and simple.  And that is the truth.  It took me forever to get into a routine and be proud of myself.  I am darn proud of how far I have come, and I am even prouder that I did this myself.

Have any of you tried this Cambogia?  If so, please share your thoughts.  I am interested to read peoples experiences.

The very best way I have found to keep on track is to Just Keep Swimming!

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Milestones

And the nominees are…..

Hi everyone! Well, this is exciting!

I would appreciate it  if you all Please vote for my blog in the Healthline Best Health Blogs of 2013 contest!  you can vote every day!

I am honored that all of you have come along for the swim and shared my story with others.  I hope that I am inspiring you to get moving, even if it is just baby steps.  There is a long road ahead, but it is one I look forward to!

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Milestones

5 K – Check!

You read it correctly! I finished my first 5 K today! And it feels AWESOME!!!

Lets go back to the beginning of the week : Mondays nights class, I ran, felt good.  By Wednesday full on cold had set in.  I think it was more of a sinus infection since my head and eyes were killing me.   I was taking everything I could find.  Felt like crap.  Still had to work, so I  couldn’t rest like I wanted to.  When I am sick – I need rest, so building up to this run, I was kind of freaking out.   I  was terrified of this run.  I was even more devastated at  the thought of not being able to do this thing I had been building myself up for.

Well, I was able to have Saturday off , so I rested , all day.  And when I woke up today…. I felt so much better!

So at the crack of dawn, we piled into the car and headed to the run.  It meant a lot to me that my husband and kids were coming with me.

When we arrived, I had to pickup my bib.  My very first number!

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I’m official !

I met up with some other gals from the gym and we headed to the start line.  Got my Map my run app going, tunes were on, and we were off!  The first mile I felt good, kinda of kept up with people too.  First mile I was done in about 13:30 minutes. I was psyched!  I Kept going , the crowd around me was dwindling out , as I knew it would. The run today had a turnaround point where you came back the way you went.  So , as I was chugging along, I was seeing all the gals from the gym coming down the other side on their way back.  It was great to look up and see happy faces encouraging me.  At the 2 mile mark is when my feet started to go numb, not sure if that is a normal thing for someone running or not, or if it is normal for an overweight person running, but it happened.  But I kept going, Just Keep Swimming!   Around 2  1/2 miles, The song ” Brave ” by Sara Barilles came on my phone.  It was awesome! I kept moving and moving.  Hit 3 miles! I was so happy to be near the end.  Just Keep Swimming!  I took my headphones out for the final stretch.  Then along side me, my friend Melissa from the gym.  We were going to cross the finish line together!

We ran up to the finish line, I look up and who do I see? My sweet nephew Dexter! And my brother in law, Mark.  I had no idea they would be coming.  Then I look and see my husband Chad, and my kids Tyler, Jason , and Maddie, cheering me on at the finish line.  Then at the end, my sister Rachel!  It was such an amazing feeling to finish.  It was awesome to finish along side my bud Melissa.  And it was the absolute best to finish with my family watching.

Here are some pictures from the finish line:

 

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Just Keep Swimming!!!

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FINISH!!!!

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My son’s hand sticking out as we run through the finish

I don’t even know how to describe how I feel finishing this run.  I am so overcome.  I finished, but now I want to do better.  My results are below:

Place No.  Name                Div/Tot  Div   Ag S City         St Nettime Pace  Guntime Pace 
276  385 Megan Ashworth       57/61   F3039 33 F North Andove MA   45:04 14:31   45:27 14:38

I didn’t finish last, almost, lol, 276 out of 293, but its a start and I am pretty darn proud. It is something to work on.  Another goal to crush.  I can’t be stopped! I am going keep moving and keep swimming.    It was a great day.

If you learn anything from my blog, I hope it is to never give up, no matter the odds.  We all have greatness within us, sometimes it just takes a while for our spark to be lit.  My spark is on fire! And there ain’t no way it is burning out any time soon.

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Milestones

Haters Step Off!

I have done some amazing things on this journey. Well, things I feel are amazing.  I have been at this now since March and I feel great.  I have gotten wonderful compliments and feedback from so many people.  But as soon as I said I was doing a 5K, things changed.  People in my gym have been nothing but extremely supportive, but people outside of the gym, and even some family have not been.  The other day was the last straw, so I took to the Less Thighs More Thunder Facebook Page and posted a little rant.  For those who are not on Facebook, here is what I wrote :

I am pumped and terrified about my first 5k. But let me say this – I am adult, I know my body and I, above anyone else know what I can do. So what on Gods green earth makes people think I am NOT ready for this?!?! Yes, I am over weight, yes, I am a slow runner, yes, its gonna take me a while, but so help me, if I hear one more time… ” You sure you can do this? You sure you want to do this? Are you really sure?” I am gonna drop kick someone! Ugh! Have faith people! I HAVE GOT THIS!!! ….. i feel better now”

It was driving me nuts – to keep having people ask me if I am ready, if I think I can do it. I didn’t understand why all of of sudden people were thinking I Couldn’t do it.   I was just really bothered by it. The last comment I got was from my grandfather, now , granted he is almost 90 years old but after it infuriated me, it made me think.  I started talking about it with my oldest and his response when I asked him about it was ” Aren’t you jumping the gun just a bit?” I asked him why he said that.  He said, “shouldn’t you do a 3k first? ” I explained that I have already run farther than 3k.  He said ” Oh”.  Then it dawned on me, these people have no idea what I have done or what I am capable of.  The folks in class, they see me, they are are also doing it themselves, everyone else, just has to take my word for it, that I can do it.  I guess my 33 lbs weight loss isn’t convincing enough.

So, my 5K is a week from today. I know I can do a 5k. I know I can , but I have yet to run that far. So, yesterday, one of my friends from the gym and I set out to run Lake Quannapowitt in Wakefield  My goal was to do at least 2 1/2 miles. It was rough for me, but running with someone, definitely helps someone like me.  My friend Christel was an awesome running partner.   By the time we were done, I had run my own 5k! I just kept going and in the end, I freaking did it!

I gotta admit, I  was so overcome that I actually did it, I cried.

I squished the haters! I was victorious!

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 I am going to finish my race next week, I am not going to let anyone hold me down.  I got this!

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Another goal down!

Thats right peeps, I am on a freakin’ roll! Last night I tackled HANDSTANDS!!!! Yup, I am on the wall. Before we started our WOD last night, we had handstand practice.  I had been wanting to try them and this was the perfect opportunity.  I set up my pad and froze.  Completely froze.  I was terrified. Then the realization set in, what the heck is the matter with me? Its a handstand.  I did them all throughout my childhood. What is so different now? Oh yeah, that extra hundred or so pounds I carry around now… But then I took myself back to my childhood.  I used to do flips and handstands and cartwheels and somersaults all the time. We used to have a ” circus” for the whole neighborhood.  Us gals used to dress up in our dance recital costumes and flip over the swing set.  So what if I am not 11 anymore, why can’t I do this? What makes now so different?  Then I started thinking more, when we were kids, we used to watch gymnastics with my mom, like, all the time.  The gymnasts would raise their hands, salute the judges and go.  So, I raised my hands and sunk to the floor, my legs kicked up , but not enough to even get close to the wall.   Think – what else did you use to do?  Yes! The hop .  I put my hands up, did a slight hop and sent my self soaring up against the wall!!!!  Came right back down, but I touched the wall. The secret is the hop 😉

Handstands – Check!!!

I kept on hopping and kept on hitting the wall. Of course I crashed on my head at least once, but I got right back up.  By the end of the practice session , I was holding my handstand on the wall.  I was so excited.  Another goal , crushed!

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Love This!

So, yes, another goal crushed and I have been doing so good lately – I am terrified.  I am scared, will it end? Am I  going to land on my face in general ? Am I going to freak out and fail myself? This is down right scary territory for me.  I am just being honest here, its my blog, so I can, lol. 

I am officially registered for my 5k – my next obstacle .  I am so excited ! I am so freaked out! I am terrified! ARRRGGGHHHH! So many emotions with this – but what I know FOR CERTAIN  :

I WILL COMPLETE THIS RUN!

IT MAY TAKE ME FOREVER, BUT MY CHUBBY FEET WILL CROSS THAT FINISH LINE!

I WILL NOT GIVE UP!

I WILL KEEP SWIMMING!

You can count on that my friends.  Follow me on the journey , hope I don;t let you down. 

And don’t forget you can find me on Facebook too!

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