I’m Still Doing It! (Belated Birthday Weekend Edition)

With everything that’s occurred this past week, it’s amazing how nature works these days. The picture you see is a “calm before the storm.”

In one week, I experienced an earthquake at work and a hurricane on my birthday (how’s that for a party crasher LOL). Nonetheless, I managed to get in my workouts on a couple of days and continue to push myself each week. Just yesterday (8/29) I ran an errand during my lunch; I went to the bank.  However, the bank was 2 miles away, so I walked under a beautiful sky and 80-degree temperatures. Of course when I walk or even when I work out at home, music MUST be present. Other than spirituality, that’s another motivator that keeps me going.  1.97 miles walked in both directions.  I rounded off and said a round-trip journey of 4 miles (*popping collar right now – LOL*).  When I was more consistent in the past, walking that far was NOTHING to me.  My legs are still feeling the burn.  I don’t think I’ve recuperated yet from Sunday night (a little more about that later).

It’s great to be able to walk outside and there’s a breeze. I managed to eat my lunch today outside under a tree with shade.  Seems like you can find more things when you’re walking than driving.  Another individual sat at the opposite end of the table.  I told him to enjoy the rest of his lunch after I finished mine: kale greens with baby carrots, seasoned with thyme, basil, dill weed, and cilantro—all cooked in my crock pot. One word:  DELICIOUS!

I’m still going to get a Zumba DVD (hadn’t purchased it yet).  Speaking of which, I attended a free Zumba class at work before Hurricane Irene paid our area a visit.  This was a fairly new instructor and did she give us a run for her money (LOL).  I enjoyed the energy and intensity of the class.  One thing I like about the Zumba classes is the music.  I try to research the artists and add them to my own personal music library.  It’s amazing how you work out your body in 45 minutes and it doesn’t seem like a workout.  Anyone that takes a Zumba class knows you work up a sweat!

After Hurricane Irene’s “visit” to our area, I managed to get out of the house on Sunday.  I had to reschedule appointments or things were postponed at later date.  When I looked outside before going to a concert, all I saw were beautiful blue skies and felt warm temperatures (despite broken twigs, branches, and trees LOL).

As a birthday treat to myself, I went to a concert that honored the Godfather of Go-Go Music, Mr. Chuck Brown.  He was celebrating his 75th birthday and several artists who were in town or from the area made a tribute to him by joining him on stage.  The music with the beats reminds me of my high school days in the marching band and listening to my college alma mater’s band as well.  Apparently, I couldn’t hang out all night since I had to be at work the next day.  I left after 11:45pm and Chuck was STILL performing LOL.   If it were not for work, I’d been at the club all night! Unfortunately, I wore my wedge shoes (trying to be cute) and my feet were killing me 😦  Note to self: wear only flats when attending a standing-room only concert.

I had a good time dancing to the music.  Can’t you see me singing “I Got the Music in Me?” (LOL) If Chuck Brown can continue to perform like he’s been doing for over 40+ years, then I know I can pursue and maintain a healthier lifestyle.  To close this post, I’ll share a birthday treat with you: a video that I recorded of Chuck Brown and several artists [Raheem DeVaughn, Kindred the Family Soul, Uptown, Ledisi, Black Alley and many more artists].  Actually, there are three of them so you can enjoy.  It might inspire you to get up on your feet and dance LOL. I sincerely apologize for the video quality. Cheers!

 

 

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The God In Me Sees Promise

I woke up today feeling refreshed and as if I can accomplish ANYTHING with faith in God! But of course, that is my continuing prayer for myself (yes, this is a journey about pursuing and maintaining a healthier lifestyle so you’re not reading the wrong blog post LOL).

I managed to work out for 5 days this past week.  My body is not used to this kind of routine: waking up at 4am and preparing for whatever workout (cardio/strength training) I decide to do that day.  I think I put it in shock! I am seeing results: the edema I was diagnosed with earlier this summer does not appear often; I can see my ankles. It was the weight gain that was part of the problem.  In addition, making sure I drink my water and post my food intake on sparkpeople.com (good resource); making healthier food choices while at the grocery store or if I get caught up in the “drive-thru demon” (SMH); and yes, getting enough sleep is important (8 hours is the goal). Now I am looking for a good Zumba workout and want to continue belly dancing.  They’re both great workouts! Maybe I can get to a pool or beach before my extracurricular activities and community service projects kick in…hmmmmm…….

August 27 is my 42nd birthday and I am so looking forward to it! I’m grateful to God to see each day, particularly this year. So many things have occurred in my life when I moved to the DMV (DC/MD/VA) area over three years ago.  I’ve grown as a human being, but there is more growing and learning to do, even as an adult.  Maybe one day, I’ll write about my experiences and share even more.  But for now, I’ll share my journey to a healthier lifestyle. I continually reflect and act on making more positive changes in my life.  There are so many things I want to do and weight loss is one of my goals for a better health.  On the external, I will make the official transition to wearing a natural hairstyle and treat myself to a concert on my birthday…..by MYSELF. It’s nice to have people to celebrate with you, but in my opinion, you appreciate more when you’re able to enjoy your own company–and you learn of what you’re capable of doing. If you look at the 2nd picture, Chuck Brown—The Godfather of Go-Go Music—will turn 75 and he was nominated for a Grammy earlier this year along with Jill Scott. How’s that for an accomplishment! He’s been in music for a LONG time.  If he can accomplish his dreams, so can I. We’ll both celebrate another year of life on the same day 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

I am so grateful for the people I’ve met through social media, and some of them I’ve met in person. It’s good to have people that support you in your endeavors and you can do the same for them.  That’s the problem with our world today; we’re concerned about “me, me, me” 24/7.  I’m not categorizing the entire society, but some of us don’t realize how we can tear each other down with negative words—particularly in social media (ok, another topic for a different soapbox).

People who know me know that music is an integral part of my life.  As you can tell in the first picture posted on this blog, I am involved in music ministry; I appreciate and love good music, regardless of genre.  Even when I work out, the music has to be energetic and fun, and it doesn’t seem like I’m working out (LOL).  I’ve told many people: without God and music in my life, I cease to exist.  Speaking of which, a friend and fellow college alum on FB asked to click “like” for a song dedication.  I practically screamed when I saw the response on my wall, because it was so on point.  That song was the inspiration for today’s blog post, and I thanked him for it.

The God In Me (an ode to Inspiration)

The God In Me sees promise

Promise of a new future

Promise of a new present in which there’s nothing I can’t do without God’s help and faith in him

The God In Me sees a future of love, family, accomplishments and continued strength

Challenges may come my way and that’s why I lean on God every.single.day

Until then, I’ll wait on my promise and continue to lean on faith and hope for the next day

As long as God allows me to exist, I shall move forward, knowing I deserve nothing less and expect nothing less

I am a queen and WILL be treated as such. Someday, God will bless me with a king to build a kingdom that HE wants us to help him build

—from the heart, in the present [MissAnn] 8/21/2011 4:45pm

 

 

 

 

Now here’s the song that inspired this post and the poem. Until next time………………

 

 

Eureka! I Survived!

Look at me, I’m trying
Everyday, I fall down
I make mistakes
Get back up
Try again
Next time that you see me

[Chorus: 2x]
I’m walking, I’m walking, I’m walking
I’m walking, I’m walking, I’m walking – “Walking” by Mary Mary

This and many other songs have been my mantra since I re-committed myself to pursuing and maintaining a healthier lifestyle.

I actually worked out 5 days this past week: Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. But I did it after 4am each morning. I admit, it was a total struggle–pushing myself to wake up each time but I felt better after I worked out between 20-45 minutes each time! However, I know that I need to get some rest (I have an addiction to good music so Mondays & Tuesdays I’m viewing and listening online at night LOL)

My exercise routine consisted of Hip Hop Cardio’ Abs & Back; Arms; Belly Dancing; Latin Dance and the entire core.  It seems like my legs are still trying to recuperate.  And I think I shocked my body into a surprise mode by waking up so early.  Working out once I get home after work is too late in the day, which is why I began this routine.  I’m still dealing with this edema, but I’m determined to push forward and be diligent. I REFUSE TO GIVE UP!  I’m looking forward to purchasing some Zumba DVDs so that’ll be my excuse to head to WalMart this week LOL.

I recently spoke to a friend whom I haven’t spoken to for quite some time.  Isn’t it amazing when someone you think about will contact you unexpectedly? I was so happy to talk to her and her brother.  She was one of my motivators to pursuing and maintaining a healthier lifestyle when I was still living at home—and still is.  She has a gift with health and fitness.  In my mind, she could probably put some current businesses to shame with her diligence in wanting people to be healthy and seeing positive results.  Years ago, when she suggested a meal plan with exercise and drinking water; incorporating fruits and vegetables—-I lost 15 pounds and very consistent in my process. You should’ve seen me strut at the Magic City Classic game with my black denim jeans and a turtleneck top on—you couldn’t tell me nothing! LOL

It’s those kind of moments and people like my friend that motivate me.  As I sit here writing this blog, I know it’s time for me to work out….so off I go.

It’s no secret that I’m a music lover. Music that motivates me; makes me dance or is empowering—I enjoy having it.  Music was and still is a staple in my family—gotta have it!  So as I prepare for another week, I’ll share with you one song that’s a motivator:

 

I’m A Survivor!

The video which inspired this post may be pertaining to the ending of a relationship, but I’ve always thought it was one of the most empowering songs known to date:

As of August 5, 2011, I made sure to write down my fitness goals and post them everywhere that’s visible.  I have them on my refrigerator and in my bedroom—right next to my Vision Board.

FITNESS GOALS

August 5, 2011

  1. LOSE 15 POUNDS BY OCTOBER 2011
  2. DRINK MORE WATER
  3. EXERCISE 6 DAYS A WEEK
  4. NO DRIVE THRU RESTAURANT VISITS
  5. MAKE HEALTHIER CHOICES FOR FOOD
  6. WRITE WEEKLY BLOG AND POST IT EACH SUNDAY
  7. RECORD SPARKPEOPLE.COM NUTRITION & FITNESS
  8. KEEP CONTINUOUS PRAYER

I’ve had several reminders within the past couple of weeks of how precious life is and how we should take care of ourselves.  I did manage to work out in the privacy of my own home due to the weather we’ve been having.  I started off with some Hip Hop Cardio, Abs workout, and Latin Dance.  It’s amazing that I have my own “gym” (so to speak) and I don’t utilize all of my available resources.  That stopped as of August 5th. I was proud of myself when I worked out for a solid hour; I worked up a sweat then had to hit the shower.  I can see progress because I wore some shoes that I haven’t been able to wear in a while–simply because my ankles were swollen due to the weight gain.  It’s a small step in the right direction but there is much to do.

Just recently, I posted  a picture on Facebook highlighting my meal for today:

(Past tense – dinner was delicious LOL) Whiting fillets; tossed salad; mixed vegetables with a glass of lemon-lime seltzer water.  My brother commented on my picture and we were going back and forth about healthy meals and that I wanted to “live a life of longevity” as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. so eloquently puts it.  As stated in a previous post, I REFUSE to become the next family statistic.  In order for me to be good to others, I must be good to myself.  Besides, I told my brother that I’ll celebrate when I know I’ve lost 20lbs. or more of weight. I won’t stop there–I keep going and continue to pursue and maintain a healthier lifestyle.

I’m going to make some moves between now and the end of the year.  In my meantime, I’ll continue to focus on the reasons why I need and want to lose this weight: balance—balance of the entire body and for more energy.  I have a birthday in less than three weeks. I would like to celebrate knowing that God has allowed me to see another birthday and maybe some pounds lost in the process 😉

Just to give you an idea of what my workout looked like, here’s a clip of the moves I actually did..not bad for 41 going on 42 lol

 

 

 

What Am I Waiting On?

I would like to share my thoughts for these past two weeks in the form of spoken word. It hasn’t been easy for me to be consistent. I’ve fallen down, but I get back and refuse to be defeated.

What Am I Waiting On?

What am I waiting on?
Time waits for no one
This extra weight I have on my body is NOT going away with a magic wand.
I will not have an instant pill to remove the fat around my abs, thighs, and arms.
I must work hard and resist the temptation of sugar, bread, red meat, and drink more water; exercise 5-6 days a week; remember why I started this journey.
I said I wanted to break the cycle of being the next family statistic.
I said I wanted to travel; earn a new job; fall in love; get married and have a family; maintain a healthier lifestyle.
In order to do thesebthings, I must be spiritually, physically, mentally, and financially prepared.
No one else is hindering me BUT me and it stops today!
I pray to God for peace of mind, heart, and spirit in order to accomplish these things.
I will no longer wait..I MUST DO!

P.S. I did manage to work out this weekend with a Hip Hop Cardio DVD. I worked up a sweat! Twice!