Daily Rants and Raves

It’s My Birthday !

Yes, you read it right, its my birthday, July 4th.  Happy Independence Day America!

I will say, today has been a good day .  We have a cookout every year on the 4th with family and friends.  Its great to catch up with everyone.  I am very blessed that I have, what I feel, is a very close family.  I love them all dearly .

What royally sucks is , even still now, I keep waiting for my Mom to call and say Happy Birthday.  I know, I’m now 38 , but damn, I still miss her like she left yesterday.  This has loomed over me all day, and I can’t shake the ache in my heart.  Ugh, sucks.

In other news, I have officially hit 2 weeks post surgery .  I am feeling really good!  I am pretty surprised actually.  My right side is still tender, but that is subsiding as well.  I have to say, I really hate taking some of my medications as liquid instead of pill form.  I mean like recoil when I have it, can’t wait until that shit is over.  I am still mainly on Protein shakes but in this stage, but I have been having other stuff too. Nothing really solid, but I have had protein bars – had no problem with them.  I did attempt some chicken , small little pieces and I chewed very well, but that did not end well. Lesson learned.  Since it was my birthday, and I could not have the cheeseburger and chips I have become accustomed to at a cookout, I opted to give my sisters pulled pork a small try.  No roll of course, but a small scoop- I took my time with eating it and I had no issues! And it was delish! A scoop filled me up with was great.  Birthday Gods must of been having a convo with the surgery Gods and must of been like ” ok, let her have this one” , lol.  Also, I did not have any cake.  I made sugar free chocolate pudding and had some sugar free cool whip with it.  My daughter and nephew got me my bowl of it.  They brought me a bowl full of sloppy pudding and cool whip all mixed together, bless their hearts.  I could eat about a quarter of the bowl, if even that .  Its the thought that counts.

Since my incisions have not fully healed yet – that meant I had to stay out of the pool – on a 90 degree day.  Soooo, I got creative. I bought a little kiddie pool and filled it up half way.  Created my oasis next to the big pool. I could sit in it with out getting my stomach wet, but still keep cool in the water.  It was heaven.  I was cool, next to the action and my nieces and nephew kept popping in keeping me company – all while obeying the ” Auntie no splash zone”.  I just love those kids. ❤  The hubs even hung out with me for while in there until he defected to the big pool , can’t say I blamed him, lol.

Last night we spent with family at my sisters new home to see the fireworks in my home town. To say it as a scorcher, is an understatement.  It had to of been at least 95 degrees and humid as hell on top of it.  It did not stop us from having  a really wonderful time.  The fireworks were great and there were sparklers for the kiddos. ( supervised and very safe , just saying ) .

My daughter Maddie with her sparkler. She had so much fun!

All in all , I can say it has been a great couple of days.  Follow up appointments next week with my surgeons.  Hopefully I will find out when I  will be cleared to head back to the gym, cause I am itching to get working out.

Happy Independence Day Everyone!

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Things to Think About

My Sleeve Gastrectomy : Day 12

Hello Everyone! Happy Hot summer !  Here in Massachusetts , we are expecting a heat wave , starting today .  Yeah for 90+ degrees – ugh. Don’t get me wrong, but 90’s and me are not exactly the best of friends.  With my Meganitis , I usually run hot . Fire skin is in effect most days.  But I am finding since my surgery , I am super hot all the time. Like sweat collecting on my face , super hot all the time.  I can’t tell if this is part of the Meganitis or  side effect from surgery .  Either way , I am a sweat hog.

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I finished stage 2 and I am so over protein shakes.  I tried in vain to add different things to my vanilla shakes, but good Lord was that such a fail.  Massive.  I somehow ended up with a surplus of Vanilla Shakes, I was just trying to get the most out of them.  I need to do some more experimenting, but pretty sure I am going to move on to some different products to make it easier for me.

I am thrilled to be able to have greek yogurt.  Yum City! My favorite right now are the strawberry cheesecake flavored ones, they are blended and delish.  Oikos and Dannon Light and Fit are my go to’s.  There are so many flavors, its awesome.  I know, I am a dork, excited about yogurt.  But its the little things that make the big things even better.

I was really struggling with my sips.  That seems to have worked itself out.  Thank goodness.  I am mixing up what I am drinking besides plain water.  Plain water never bothered me before, but now, I need some flavor yo!  I have been doing Propel water, and making sugar free crystal lite (okay so not “Crystal lite” exactly, more like Stop N Shop brand, lol )  in various flavors.   I take a gallon of water and toss in 2 tubes of mix and dunzo .

I was craving , craving , craving my potato soup. Now potatoes were not allowed on this stage, so I amped up my protein.  I made it with Bone Broth instead of regular chicken broth and instead of cream cheese, I used plain Greek yogurt. I also added bacon.  But what I also did this time which I had not done before was really pureed the shit out of the soup with my immersion blender. End result was a creamy, smooth, protein packed, delish soup which satisfied the craving while still trying and slightly bending the guidelines. But, I also used to put down 2 bowls at a time when I made this before, this time, it was half a bowl and I was full.

I am still tender on my right side , but other than that, I am not in any pain. Moving on to the next stage I really think my problem is going to be taking my time eating.  It is supposed to take me a half hour to eat a meal.  I am categorically a fast eater.  Slowing down is going to be a challenge, but I gotta do it.

I do need to get out for more walks – my kids and I strolled along the boardwalk in Newburyport yesterday. Even though it was very hot, the breeze was amazing.  Its one of my favorite places, and now it makes me feel closer to my Mom.  She grew up in Newburyport and she loved her hometown.

Its funny, after our stroll, we went to a little roast beef/ sub shop place and I remembered being a kid and going to Old Fashion Sunday, part of Newburyport’s annual Yankee Homecoming.  One of my aunts lived closed to the Bartlett Mall – not like stores in a mall.  Its like a park, with a pond and a huge fountain / statue ( honestly I cannot remember which ). Anyways , we’d walk down with my aunts, some cousins and it was just a wonderful time.  I remember the time we were there for the muster and got soaked.  Such fun times I cherish.  It was these little things that my Mom did with us that not only created the closeness with my aunts and cousins that continues to this day, but also  created fun and lasting memories on a budget. We did not have a ton of money growing up but my parents still created wonderful childhood for us and I will forever be grateful. So, I try to do the same, create moments with my kids.  I don’t know how I am doing.  I hope they look back and they are happy with their childhood and can say they had a good one.

At the end of the day, what everything comes down to , is family.  Not just blood, but the family we are given and the family we make.  Its my hope that by having this surgery, I can lose weight and do more to participate with them, do things with them.  Our trip to Disney last year, we were kidding around that I would need a scooter- actually it was a deep fear I would need one.  I don’t want that to happen again. I vow that will not happen.

Gotta keep swimming!!!

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Things to Think About

You May Say I’m a dreamer

But I’m not the only one …. 

Momma was too . 


My mother was probably the biggest dreamer I know . Always having hope that her dreams would come true . I’d like to think that all her dreams came true , but I’m sure they didn’t . I mean if her dream was to be the bestest momma ever and the bestest nana ever and just the greatest human to ever live – then mission accomplished! 

Sunday we started the process of going through Mums things . Gut wrenching doesn’t even describe it . It was fucking awful . It would of been no matter if it was a month since she has been gone or 10 years . I hated it . 

As long as I can remember my mother was always dreaming of a better way , dreaming of her own business so she could contribute. She did the usual , you know the home party route , Princess House , Party Lites , she did Avon . In fact , it was when my mother was canvassing the neighborhood selling Avon that friendships were forged with our neighbors . Now , 34 years later , we are still friends . That’s magic . 

My mother had a cross stitch business for a large part of my life as her health would allow . She would sew these amazing samplers and then she would stain them to look antique. I would go with her to craft fairs . She was so talented , it blows my mind . She had done an after school program that I helped her with . She made cross stitch kits for these kids . They all loved it . Honestly I had forgotten about it until I was looking for a cross stitch kit for my daughter and I to do together . I , myself haven’t done it for probably 20-25 years, but I want to give it a whirl . And my daughter wants too a lot . So the search continues for a kit . 

Amongst my mothers things were a plethora of crafting items . From frames to jewelry making tools and beads to jewelry she wanted to sell , and as I think of it , it makes me so sad . She had all these ideas , probably thousands of ideas and she never really got to see them through .  

It just breaks my heart that her body would  not allow her to fulfill her dreams . I hope she didn’t look at it that way , but I can’t help but think of it like that . 

All of this has me really thinking about my dreams and what I want out of my life . What am I passionate about ? What do I want to do in my life ? I mean I got very lucky with 3 healthy kids , but what do I want ? For me ? To fulfill me ? I think as parents we get so caught up in our kids that we forget about ourselves and what made us who we are to begin with . 

So , for me , I want to get back into writing . I have story ideas that I need to bring to life.


I love writing . I always have and it’s something I have been going over and over . In another moment when Mum sent me a sign , I was watching the Simpson’s last night ( yes , I watch the Simpson’s , don’t be hatin’) and it was the episode where Moe becomes a writer and gets to go to Word Loaf . Check it out below : 

Moe N Lisa Simpsons
I looked at it as it’s an episode about writing . And I have been searching to find myself and how I honor my mother . So , I took it as a sign . 

I think the way to honor her the best is to just be me and not stop dreaming . 

And now that I’ve got some star power up there , maybe some of these dreams will come true . 

Don’t stop dreaming 

Don’t stop Believing 

Don’t stop Swimming 

Daily Rants and Raves

Faking It on a Wednesday

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I feel like Kurt is a good way to express myself. I am a huge Nirvana fan .

I feel like every day I am faking it.

Faking that I feel good.

Faking that I can handle this.

Faking that I am not brokenhearted.

I am trying to suck it up and deal with my daily pains.  I have moments where all i want to do is go to bed. I have moments where I feel fine. I have moments where I want to remove my legs and hang them on the wall. There is nothing I can do. Changing meds hasn’t helped . There is no cure for the fibro and if it is RA ( or a variant of it ) , there is no cure for that either.  Its just one of those things that people deal with I guess.

To be in pain on the outside hurts and sometimes it feels better. But to be hurting on the inside is a whole other ball game. I would take 1000 times the pain on the outside to alleviate this pain in my heart.

I have hurt before, for years I have been in a depression I guess in the clinical sense of the word. I Could not see the light. I feel like the light right now is hiding behind the shadows.  I know this is not how my mother would want me to feel .  I know she would say something crazy or something comforting or both. She had that way about her.

The reality is I miss my mother something fierce.  I miss hearing her voice , I miss her hugs, I miss just knowing she is here.  My mom was my person. My person I call when I am happy, when I am sad, when I have good news, when I have bad news , Mum was my person who could talk me off the ledge and make me feel better.

So, each year for the past 4-5 years I have been taking my son to the comicon in Rhode Island. Today they announced that Cary Elwes would be attending.  My most favorite movie of all time is The Princess Bride.  So, of course, who do I call to fangirl too?  I can hear her going ” oh how cool is that ?!” Not that my dad didn’t have pretty much the same reaction, but its not the same.

I am trying to figure out my way in this world and how to best honor my mother. I’m at a loss.

I need to get myself together, and get back on track. Just trying to figure myself out.

Gotta keep swimming

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Milestones

Sabbatical ovah!

Hi there everyone!!!

A lil bit of my Massachusetts accent coming out in the post name, lol!

Boy, I didn’t realize how long its been since my last post.  I have so much to say and so many directions to go in.  Bear with me 🙂

Funked

First off, I need to acknowledge my funk.  Honestly, I am so frustrated with myself right now, I am just sick about it.  This time last year, I was deep into working out and making changes and seeing results.  Now, I am still working out, not as much for whatever reason, but I need to get back into it and make sure I am doing at least 3 days a week if not more.  I wish I could work out every day, seriously.  I have been stuck since December.  Still maintaining what I lost in terms of inches.  Still rocking the size 16, lol.  But I have gained back a few pounds.  Ugh.  I think part of my problem is my nutrition and lack there of .  I know I have talked about it before.  I am trying to find what works for me, cause I will never be a salad girl.  A work in progress still.  But I don’t want to focus on that right now in this post.   Another thing is it seems since I have plateaued my drive has not been as much or as strong.  I think that is the thing that bothers me the most.  I am vowing to get myself back on the right path.  I seriously tell myself to keep swimming to keep going.

So what if I hit a rather large bump along the road?  It is not going to hold me down.  No freakin way.  I have too much to get fit for.  Which leads me to my next topic:

Who Keeps you Healthy?

I was asked my friends over at the American Recall Center  to participate in their “Who Keeps You Healthy?” segment.  It sounds easy, but this is a great question.  One I ask of all of you as well.  Who does keep you healthy?   For me, it is most definitely my family.  I am doing this for myself, but I am doing it for my family, to be here and be present and be part of the exciting moments with them, actively,  not on the side lines.  This was so real for me recently.

I was lucky enough to be able to take one of my vacation weeks during April Vacation with my kids.  I don’t think that since I started working I have been able to do this.  Our first day of vacation, we went bowling with family and friends.  Bowling may not seem like a crazy physical activity to most, but to someone over weight there is a lot of bending and picking up involved, and don’t forget finding some shoes that fit, lol.  I had a pretty easy time of it!  Yuppers!

Cousins! My daughter Maddie and nephew Dexter waiting their turn to bowl!
Cousins! My daughter Maddie and nephew Dexter waiting their turn to bowl!

The next day was the big test for me.  We went to Battleship Cove in Fall River.    It’s this cool place where they have decommissioned battleships, submarines and other cool old military stuff. It never occurred to me that there may be tight spaces to squeeze through, or that the whole place was tight spaces.  When we entered the first ship, I was thinking that my kids are going to see me get stuck in a door or tight space, and how embarrassed I was going to be, and worst yet, how embarrassed my kids were going to be.  But as we started through the ships, it wasn’t so bad.  I was able to move about without an issue.  No stuck bums here!  This is exactly why getting myself together and getting fit is so important to me.  To be able to have fun with my kids is priceless.  Here are some of our pictures from our day:

 

 

Let me take a Selfie! Lol
Let me take a Selfie! Lol
My son Tyler and I
My son Tyler and I
My son Jason, my daughter Maddie and I
My son Jason, my daughter Maddie and I
See how small those doors are?!
See how small those doors are?!
She was so excited to take a picture with the " Shark Boat"
She was so excited to take a picture with the ” Shark Boat”
You can see how big the battleship is in this picture
You can see how big the battleship is in this picture

THIS IS WHAT IT IS ALL ABOUT!

I am blessed that I am able to do these things now, I would of struggled so much before if I attempted it.  I am still a work in progress, but boy! Is this a great ” SWIM” or what?!?!?   SO folks, WHO drives you? Who helps you? Who is your cheerleader? We all have people that push us weather they know it or not.  I’d love to hear who your  team is!

My Workouts !/ Gym Time!

Even though I have been in a funk, I have still be making it to the gym at least 2 x week, not impressive, I know, but still, better than nothing.   Here are some of my recent workouts :

5 Rounds for time

200m plate run with 25 lb plate

15 Vups – supposed to be TTB, but we are not there yet and it was a lot, Vups will work on getting me to TTB

3 Rope Pull Ups – supposed to be rope climbs – Cha!

My time was 27:38

The run with the plates, whoa nelly.  That was tough.  I started my ” Just Keep Swimming” , gets me through 🙂

6 rounds for time

6 HSPU – on the wall, bending my arms and able to dip a bit 🙂

10 Power Cleans – 65 lbs

14 Alternating R/L pistols ( with rings)

My time was 23:11.

I gotta say, I freaking love doing HSPU, Can’t wait til I get to the point where I can bend all the way and push all the way back up!

10 Min AMRAP Box Jumps and Hang Cleans

5 Box Jumps 12″ box with 45 lb plate on top

5 Hang Cleans 75 lbs

10 Box Jumps 12″ box with 45 lb plate on top

5 Hang Cleans 75 lbs

15 Box Jumps 12″ box with 45 lb plate on top

5 Hang Cleans 75 lbs

20 Box Jumps 12″ box with 45 lb plate on top

5 Hang Cleans 75 lbs

15 Box Jumps 12″ box with 45 lb plate on top

I was happy with this – even more happy because I thought I was doing 65 lbs and I was doing 75! PR!

We also did strength that night.  Push Press.

I totally PR’d by getting up to 80 lbs!!! Yea ME!

30 Min time Cap – Running Burpees Squats

400 m run

10 Burpees

40 BW squats

200 m run

20 Burpees

40 BW squats

400 m run

30 Burpees

Thats as far as I got.  Running is now being incorporated since the weather is better here.  I have been using a calf stretcher before every class, OH MY SWEET BABY JESUS! Is that thing awesome!  It soooooo helps me.  Now, I can I get a sports bra that will hold these girls and a something to make my butt stop jiggling then this running thing is gonna be easy!

Forging Ahead

So folks, there you have it.  The past month or so rolled up .  If anything has become clearer to me, its that THIS IS A JOURNEY. And Journeys, my friends, take time.  I can’t let this recent bout derail me.  I am going to keep Swimming !  I gotta.  So what if things are exactly the way I planned them?  I love working out and I am going to continue with Cross Fit.  I can’t imagine my life without it! It is such a rush when I PR! It keeps me going.  This is a lifestyle now, and I will live it every day.

Until Next time folks! Don’t forget to catch me on Facebook too!

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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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Daily Rants and Raves

Progess – it’s a good thing!

So, this week my challenge was the 5 classes I signed up for.  Didn’t work out so well…. Got out of work late on Thursday and have so much going on tomorrow, that I just canceled the class.  But still got in 3 classes this week, as well as my 3.7 mile walk on Sunday.  I am happy with that.

This week we did a lot of barbell work.

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I know, not barbells, but I think they are funny 🙂

Monday we did Push jerks, I did 45 lbs, then we had overhead barbell lunges- my lunges have gotten so much better, but I still struggle, so I just used the training bar 15lbs, then ring rows and mountain climbers.  I kept struggling with the lunges, and my coach Jane gave me a pep talk, and I could do them, I just needed confidence.

See, that is one of the things I freakin love about my gym.  The coaches are amazing people.  They lift you up and help you do better. Give you goals to strive for and find the positive through your frustration.  I have nothing else to compare them to, but I am forever in debt to them for helping me on this journey.  I can only hope I do them proud in my months to come.  I hope all of you reading along have got a great support system, it really makes a difference, in all aspects.  I know I have said this before, but my family is awesome.  My kids know I am trying to get healthy and they support me and are positive about it. My son Jason even came with me on my 3.7 mile walk.  Cheering me on. To hear they are proud of me is something that makes me feel like Super Woman.   He even mentioned ” Just Keep Swimming” and how its my motto to keep going,  How great is that? I am blessed.

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Jason and I on our walk

 

Okay, back to the workouts : Wednesday we did Barbell Clean practice, then back squats – I had 55 lbs, and Hand Stand Push ups , not on the wall yet, but on a box, better than the ground I guess. The fact that I could do the back squats was crazy, let alone the 100 we had to do.  Then tonight we practiced our rope climbs, or my Tarzan Swing.  So, I have never been able to get myself on the rope.  Tonight I was able to geet myself on the rope off the ground, just enough to swing, lol, add the grass skirt and I was Tarzan! At least I got off the ground , and if its progress I will take it! Then we did deadlifts – 115 lbs.  We also had to do ring dips – I tried to do them, I was able to get one leg on the band, but I can’t lift myself up to do the dip.  I can swing, but can’t get myself up enough to do the darn dip.  That aggravates me to no end.  I thought by now I would be able to do these. UGH!!!! So I had to resort to bench dips.  Then it was 50 double unders, which is something else I can’t do, so it was 150 regular jumps – all this for 4 rounds.  Surprisingly, I had a much easier time jump roping than I remember.  I was able to jump 60 times without having to stop – usually I get to about 25-30 if I am lucky.  I consider this progress. I also finished first tonight – which is crazy to me.  Probably cause I was the only one doing the bench dips, but, it is a rare occasion  that I finish first, so I will take it!!

In other news, I have mentioned before my wonderful luck in my hand me downs . One of my items is a XL shirt from Old Navy.  I wore it yesterday. The shirt fit! Holy Crap! A normal , not plus size, no W in the size shirt actually fit me !!!!! Its the little moments and little victories that mean the most.  The subtle differences that go the long way.

As you can tell, I talk alot about this journey, this process.   I tell people straight up how I have lost 28 pounds and how I am still losing and getting healthy.  It’s no bullshit.  I am the living embodiment of hard work and doing this the right way.  There are no pills, no fad diets,  no wraps, it is blood, sweat and tears.  It’s dedication and hard work.  Dedication to myself.  How many of us really have that? Or if we do, how long did it take us to find ourselves?  This is a lifestyle.  If you are serious about losing weight and getting fit, you need to be dedicated and you need to be ready.  All those years of bitching I was fat, yes, I acknowleged it , but I wasn’t ready to make the move.  I may of said I was, but my actions said otherwise.  There are no excuses.  If you want to do – then you will do it.  And my dear friends, I am doing it. And I am loving it! Find your passion, find your drive and don’t let go!  Just Keep Swimming !!!!!

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