Category Archives: Progress

My Unplugged Weekend

A lot has been going on in my life. I have myself pulled in many different directions as I usually do but this time there’s a paramount difference. I can’t seem to hold and stay on any one particular project for too long. I am usually pretty good at starting and then finishing something but for some reason lately I’ve had a lot of trouble concentrating too long on one task. I changed jobs (same job just different location), began working on a holistic nutritionist certification, continue to slowly (very slowly) build my business, I still have this blog looming over my head that I don’t sit down to write in enough, I continue to teach group fitness thinking often of new certifications I should do and want to do, and my husband and I have been trying for a baby. All of this and I continue to find myself adding new projects – just to add to the confusion, I try to maintain my social media presence, be able to maintain my relationship with my husband and pets, and still work enough to make money to pay the bills.

After 5 months of unsuccessfully trying for a baby I had a meltdown. My mind was being consumed by what was happening in my body, was I pregnant? The answer was clear as day when my body told me, 5 days late, that I in fact was not. I was broken. The sense of loss only something a mother who has lost a child could know – I didn’t lose a child, not a physical one, but the idea of a child was lost in my minds eye. Another month gone, 5 months of 2016 have been consumed with all ways one can make their body more fertile, how one can plan and time making a baby so that it would be successful. Five months of communication in a private Facebook group with other hopeful women trying to conceive either their first or fifth child. There’s been something missing these five months despite having communicated with so many women – this feeling that someone understands me, this has been a missing piece.  

I needed time to collect my thoughts and figure out what my next step is to be.

So, after a mental dump of everything that I had been feeling, I decided I needed time away. I needed time to collect my thoughts and figure out what my next step is to be. I shut down the social media and picked up a book. The first book I picked up was called “When GOD Winks at You” by Squire Rushnell. The stories in this book tell of men and women who have experienced situations that would have otherwise been described as coincidence, but the author explains that there really is no such thing as coincidence. That actually these experiences are winks from God. Little messages from God saying “Hey there, I’m here, you are not alone, I am with you.” This book was full of little stories of hope. It got my mind thinking about all of the little coincidences that have occurred in the last 5 months, and my whole life. All of the babies I’ve noticed, of the women who were pregnant, of the number 12 that keeps ringing in my ears after my friends mom said it had significance and that we would conceive within the year, and how much this social media rest has seemed to be needed.

You see, social media consumes us, at least it was consuming me. How many times have you woken up and immediately grabbed your phone to see what you missed while you were sleeping. Could it really have been that much? I mean, most of the world is sleeping at the same time as you, but you feel the NEED to pick up your phone and dial into Facebook or Instagram or whatever social media is all the craze at that moment. I had trouble for this reason, I had trouble truly putting it down. I found myself mindlessly scrolling – not taking part in posts or liking things, but still scrolling to see pictures of my “friends” and all of the things they were doing while I was supposed to be taking a “break.”
I would scroll for a few moments and then realize what I was doing and put it away. Then I picked up another book called “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho. This book has been around for almost my entire life, and I had heard IMG_6416of it before but was never drawn to pick it up. Less than 12 hours from when I picked it up, I finished the book, and in awe of what I had just read I felt the immediate urge to start writing. You see, last night when I was walking around Barnes and Nobles searching for the next book I’d be reading during my weekend away from social media, I opened a book that had a bookmark in it from a publishing company that read “Are you ready to write you book? Contact us! We can help!” I smiled, as if this was a sign (or a godwink?) that I needed to take on yet another project – to finally write that book I’ve been meaning to write all of these years. I actually started writing, a few months back I wrote a paragraph and proclaimed “I’m writing a book!” But that’s where it started and ended. After reading The Alchemist yesterday and this morning, and being drawn to write, to just pour out whatever came to mind regardless of if it made sense – I realized that it is time. It’s time to add that additional project to my plate, because maybe it’s part of my Personal Legend. Maybe it’s part of the story of my life, for me to write a book – and it starts with this blog post.

Go where your heart tells you, get up and move

Besides writing a book, trying for a baby, paying for but not studying for a holistic nutritionist certification (because there’s just not enough time in the day right?), I’m also taking a trip in a few short weeks to North Carolina to see how I like it, to see if this feeling of my heart being drawn there is real or not. Taking two days off from social media has so far been proof to me that this world we live in has become so disconnected from each and every one of our hearts because we are consumed by everyone’s life but our own. Ever wonder why so many people are drawn to yoga and meditation? Maybe it’s because something vital is missing from their lives. Maybe it’s because they are so consumed with everything that is going on around them their hearts are screaming to be heard too! My heart was screaming so loud I couldn’t help but hear it. My heart was yelling at me to stop paying attention to everyone else and start looking inward. Read a little, listen a lot more, and really take in all the experiences that occur in the next few days. Go where your heart tells you, get up and move.

I find that I’ve allowed myself to become so consumed with others business that I’ve forgotten about my own. That if I spent the hours that I’ve been on social media (because if you add it all up it’s probably way more time spent on others than I’d ever thought) tackling all of these projects, that I’d actually get some things done. I’d like to spend some time everyday writing, whether it materializes into a book at the end of the day well, I guess I won’t know that until it happens or doesn’t happen but at least I’ll have spent time getting the words out of my head so that they can eventually be shared. If I spent a little of that time reading the books I have on holistic nutrition, I could complete the certification I am truly interested in so that I can help people learn to eat real food and heal their bodies. If I spend more of that time with myself, reading stories of triumph and leadership, I will learn from others how to successfully realize all of my dreams. If I spend less time “googling” and searching how to be fertile, and more time eating healthy and spending real time with my husband, maybe God will answer our prayers for a child.

Now, I’m not saying social media is terrible, I’m just saying that I think it’s important to unplug and connect with yourself for some time as well. On Monday I IMG_6411will go back to posting on social media and continue to check in with those around me, but I am sure
something inside me has changed, and if I ever feel like I’m being consumed by others lives again I will again completely unplug. I feel that it’s important to stay in touch but real human connection (whether it be to others or to yourself) is of utmost importance. Face to face, belly to belly relationships is what has made the world go round all of these years and we have truly begun to get away from that. We hide behind our computer screens, tablets, and phones. And we ignore those we love. So, I challenge you to roll over tomorrow morning, thank God for the sun shining on your face and kiss your husband, wife, or puppy (if you have no one next to you kiss yourself!)

Before you plug in to the electronics, PAUSE and plug into yourself! 

 

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Turning point

In my experience people tend to write about their successes most – of course they do, who wants to hear about their failures? I’ve been doing a whole lot of personal development/soul searching lately, reading a lot, and listening to motivational podcasts to and from work on my hour drive. During this time I’ve heard a lot of stories of triumph – most of which started by some series of events that was a turning point. I’ve come to realize that successful people tend not to harp on their failures but appreciate them as a step towards their success. 

But what about those moments where you’re deep in the throws of the failure? What about when you’re in the middle of that turning point where you have to make a decision – to stay the same, or to go down the road of success. 

For people with an eating disorder it’s not as cut and dry – and this goes for other mental disorders as well, but for me the eating disorder is the biggest thing that holds me back in my personal life. I feel that I’m in the middle of a turning point – I could continue down the path I’m in and gain back all of which I lost, or I could start now making small choices to slowly lose that of which I’ve already gained back before it becomes so much that it’s overwhelming. 

No one talks about this moment because it’s not always happy. The lowest of the low points are hard, but the only way to get through them is to take a really honest look at what’s been going on. I’d be lying if I said that I’ve been eating well, hitting the gym the way I’d like to, and really doing everything I could to be healthy. A real look at what’s been going on would be quite the opposite. So why have I fallen back into some really bad habits? 

I’ve allowed my eating disorder to be an excuse – “I have trouble losing weight because I have issues with eating.” My stressful job situation was also an easy excuse – “I am always on the go so I have no time for a break, and by the time I do i’m starving so i binge” well, I changed jobs so that can no longer be an excuse. 

I really feel that my jobs stress was weighing me down and although I wasn’t staying accountable for my own actions, and I was allowing excuses to reign over my life, I had a valid reason. But now that I’ve transferred, despite being changed to a hospital that seems to always have cake – I’m in a less stressful work environment and I can finally get a handle on my nutrition. 

So, I’m embarking on a change – a new one for me – a lifestyle change that I plan to do slowly – no quick fix plans allowed – and if you catch me doing something like that please call me out. The plan is to start with small and easy changes. The reason for this is because nothing I’ve ever done before has lasted for very long. Sure, 5 years ago I lost over 100lbs, but I was unable to sustain it. 

I’m going to document this journey on multiple social media platforms – here, on Instagram (@suz_rice) and (@pugs_and_pushups) and I may also restart my YouTube channel. 

Stay tuned. And if you want to join me, help keep me accountable – I need to change – I need to feel better, look better, and stop teaching health without living it. I’m done allowing my eating disorder control me – it’s time to be in control! 

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Happy New Year!

  
All of us here at Pugsandpushups.com would like to wish all of our followers a very happy and healthy New Year! We hope that 2016 brings you all of the things you hope for and that you will continue to work on becoming the best version of you! Thank you for following along our crazy story and look forward to continue to grow this blog! 

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Something weird happened today…

“Something weird happened… I walked around stop and shop and had no desire to buy or eat anything that wasn’t a whole food or considered clean”

This morning I had to substitute teach Body Pump at 6am for one of my friends so I had a banana on my way in (I’m really trying not to workout completely fasted). When I got home I had 1 egg, 1/2 cup egg whites, and 1/2 cup Brussels sprouts with a squirt or two of ketchup (finally a photo!)  

 
Around 11am I was starving but knew I didn’t have any quick snack with me so I waited, but around 11:45 remembered I had thrown an Asian pear into my bag! So I chowed down on most of the pear – until my tummy felt better and then I headed back into work.

At 1:30 I had lunch which consisted of about 4-5 oz of chicken breast and about a cup of green beans. I added butter because there was nothing on either and it was totally flavorless.

At 4:30pm I had a grapefruit with a packet of stevia in the raw – I ate the whole thing since I didn’t have the half at breakfast due to time and, well, I’m not eating a grapefruit in my car! 

As I was leaving work (around 6:45pm) I decided to have 1/2 of an Italian cookie because one of my coworkers said they were the best she had ever had – it wasn’t that good so I didn’t finish it. 

Then I headed to go teach another body pump class and stopped by CVS to pick up a thing of laughing cow Swiss cheese. I ate one block and headed into class (7:30pm). After class I ate one of those really long cucumbers with two more of those laughing cow Swiss cheeses (9pm). Cucumbers and LC Swiss (or cream cheese) are probably one of my favorite snacks! 

Since I had yet to eat dinner I decided to head into the super market.  When I got there something weird happened… I walked around stop and shop and had no desire to buy or eat anything that wasn’t a whole food or considered clean. I bought an organic butternut squash soup, a honey Chobani yogurt, an organic almond bar, and a can of peas … I don’t know why but I wanted peas! 

When I got home (9:30pm) i had the butternut squash bisque soup and ate the small can of peas mixed with some shrimp (don’t judge me).  

I only had one moment today during work where I wanted to eat junk – it’s something about my work environment that makes everyone seek bad food. After I allowed that to pass I felt much better. Today was overall a good good day despite eating a bit more fruit than usual. I feel good and I’m interested to see if the food cravings continue to decline as I choose more clean/whole foods!

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Sweets everywhere😓

Today was the first day back to work after 4 days off – so you can imagine that I was less than excited to get back to my routine. Despite cookies and holiday goodies still making their way around the hospital (I work for a very high paced specialty animal hospital that seems to moonlight as a junk food safe house during the holidays) I kept my distance. Here’s how the day looked:

Breakfast (around 8am): 1/2 grapefruit with 1 packet stevia in the raw, 1/2 cup egg whites and 1/2 cup shaved Brussels sprouts with a squirt of ketchup on top

Snack (around 11): 1/2 grapefruit  with 1 packet of stevia in the raw and the rest of the quinoa salad from yesterday which was probably about 1/2 cup.

Lunch (1:45pm): leftover chicken from last nights chicken stuffed peppers wrapped in lettuce wraps – probably had about 6 or 7 smal wraps

Snack(5pm): a handful of shrimp and a cup of green beans with a little butter melted on top  

 probably the most boring snack but I really like shrimp so – boring is where it’s at!

After eating this snack I tasted a small piece of a brownie that had been staring at me all day – I was happy with the small piece and didn’t go back for more.

Dinner(8:15pm): I didn’t feel like cooking so I headed to whole foods and got some ginger carrot bisque (soup) and vegan stew. I was also really craving peanut butter so I found these 5 ingredient organic chocolate peanuts butter Minis –  

 I had no idea organic chocolate that literally has 5 ingredients could be this good! Have you tried these!?  Not too shabby! 

In other news I sent out 4 clothing items that I sold from Facebook today! Who knew! Probably everyone, but I thought it was kind of cool that I could sell cloths that are just sitting in my closet! When I was there I asked the cashier for holiday stamps – they are to send my Christmas cards – and this is what he gave me  

 Lol! So my belated Christmas cards will have Hanukkah stamps! Oh well! Haha
Overall I felt good today. I definitely felt deprived around that second snack – I didn’t want shrimp and green beans, I wanted to eat the whole brownie, but I was proud of myself for choosing the green beans and shrimp while only having a small piece of the brownie… I’m sure in time this will get easier. Woke up with a little headache – I wonder if that will subside once my body is used to eating whole foods most of the time. 

What treats do you allow yourself?

Do you find it hard to say no when there’s treats everywhere? What is your fail safe plan?

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Food journal: the beginning

I mentioned this morning that I was starting a new plan. The plan consists of eating mostly vegetables and lean protein. I’m not counting calories or macros because in my experience doing these things tends to exacerbate my binge eating disorder. So, without further ado – here’s what I’ve eaten today. 

Woke up: around 7-7:30am

Breakfast (around 8:30am) : 1/2 cup egg whites, 1/4 cup shaved Brussels sprouts, squirt of ketchup, 1/2 grapefruit with 1 packet of stevia in the raw 

Taught Body Pump 10am-11am

Post workout Snack (11:30am): venti cafe americano 1/2 grapefruit with 1 packet of stevia in the raw, 1 cup quinoa salad with cranberries and cashews

Lunch (3:30pm): shrimp, eggs, salsa, and shaved Brussels sprouts mixed together in salad boats and two organic carrot sticks  

 

Dinner (7:20pm): 1 yellow pepper stuffed with shredded chicken, onions, green peppers, and black beans, topped with shredded taco cheese and 2tsp guacamole

 

  1. Snack (9pm): 1 med banana with 1tbsp nut butter 

Thoughts:

As I round out my day, I reflect on what I’ve eaten today and how I’ve felt. I feel like I could add more veggies to my meals – but I wasn’t really hungry. My main carb sources were eaten before and after my workout and I felt good throughout. I didn’t feel overly hungry or feel the need to search for food. My only real craving was for the banana but mostly because I’ve walked past them all day. I stayed pretty busy most of the day despite being home. I sold some clothes online and washed dishes. I also spent some extra time playing with the pups and laughing at Louie (my cat) who decided it would be fun to fall asleep in my laundry basket  

 Silly boy.
It’s been an overall good day with no real thoughts of binging. My focus has shifted from needing something to work towards – some event, competition, race, etc – to wanting to lose some extra weight to be happy with my own body and be healthy. I feel this will both be good for myself but also for my clients – to see that I’ve struggled but have managed to focus on myself and heal myself before putting any extra or excess stress on my system by doing anything drastic to lose weight for some other reason other than health!

Do you struggle with finding a balance between weight loss for health and weight loss for some idea body image?

What is your favorite healthy recipe?

What is your favorite vegetable?

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I’ve decided not to compete

Over the summer I wrote about my road to recovery with my ankle fracture, but the reality is that I haven’t given it much time to recover. I probably took a week off after my injury, and then went back to training – pretty much back to normal. I spent about a month in the last 6 months with little to no pain in my ankle but over the last 6 weeks (coinciding with my powerlifting training) my ankle has gotten to the point of pain where now both my knee and hip are giving me issues during simple movements. I’ve also found it harder to warm up enough to get to a point of no pain and I feel that I’m compensating and using my right leg more to lift up for most squat lifts. 

The problem with all of this is that if I continue this way one of two things will happen – I will either get injured to the point that I can’t do anything, or I will inevitably cause enough damage that I won’t ever be able to reach my potential. 

So, with my teeth clenched, and my heart heavy, I have decided not to compete in what was to be my first powerlifting meet in January. 

This in no way means my dreams of competition are over – but just on hold for a bit.

Anyone who knows me, knows that I’m competitive and always trying to do more – but this time I need to be realistic and take note that there will be more powerlifting meet opportunities and more opportunities to master a craft such as powerlifting. I feel that if I give my ankle more time to actually heal (I’m going back to the doctor for a second opinion and will actually ask for an MRI this time) and do a bit more research to get a plan and coach that will help me reach a potential rather than trying to be a know it all and figuring it out on my own …. I will be more successful in the future.

Have you ever had to put a dream on hold due to injury? How did you cope with your decision to step away? 


Thanks for stopping by and all of your support! ❤️

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Diet & workout plan

In an effort to be completely transparent, I want to share with you my plan for the next 7 weeks. My powerlifting comp is approaching a bit faster than I thought and my weight has been pretty stagnant – mostly because I have yet to really do the plan I set up. (Funny how that works 😜).
Since I have been working some weird hours, my diet has been less than ideal – so this week I have set into place an easy to follow plan that allows me to pick and choose what I want for the most part as long as it fits the description. This diet will bring me in around 1500 calories, with a plan to get to 1350 at my max defecit (rest days) and 1800 cals on super heavy days. I’ve started with two days of 20 minutes of fasted cardio with the option to increase if after a week or two my weight stagnates. 
The plan is as follows:

  
 

With my workout schedule looking something like this:

  
  

I may have a Chobani flips instead of a protein shake (because they are yummy), or 1/2 portion protein and veggies in that place just because I literally can’t stand drinking protein shakes, but I will make an effort for this to be the plan at least for week 1 and then plan to increase or decrease depending on how I feel. As far as my workout schedule, I know it’s a bit much, but my body is used to this kind of volume, and when I decrease the volume I start to gain – so I will have to just do what feels good and take an extra day off here and there depending on how I feel. If I feel good I will go straight through. As long as Monday, Wednesday, Friday continue to be my 5×5 squat, chest, DL (deadlift), then the rest will depend completely on how I feel! 
Stay tuned as I update ya’ll on progress! Ps- I have 4 days left of my cleanse – so don’t worry I’ll post an update once it’s done! It’s taken a few extra days because I’ve worked some overnights which wind up making me eat weird and take supplements at weird times so it spread out the cleanse a bit 💪🏼❤️
 

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10 Day Cleanse starts Now!

I’ve posted about this before: the AdvoCare 24 day challenge; but I haven’t been really consistent with posting results or progress. I’ve had a new cleanse laying around and I’ve been trying to decide when to do it but this morning I woke up after being in an M&M, thanksgiving foods, and pie coma for three days and decided that it was time for that cleanse. 

I was doing really well with IIFYM even though I’m not a huge fan, I figured I’d try it – but after 6 days of not losing 1lb followed by thanksgiving madness and working an overnight (which always throws me off) I figured it was time for that cleanse. 

This morning I started by weighing in and taking photos and then had the probiotic, catalyst, and spark, followed by (a half hour or so later) a chocolate peanut butter meal replacement shake and unflavored fiber drink. 

Current Weight: 172lbs

Goal weight: 156lbs (must be under 158 for powerlifting meet)

Goal for 10 day cleanse: 165lbs. There’s at least 4lbs of water/inflammation from thanksgiving since i haven’t been drinking water and before thanksgiving I was 168lbs. So there’s no reason I can’t lose that + 3lbs. Then the goal will be to lose 10lbs or so befor January 23rd! 

Follow along as I post my #weightlossjourney and my #journeytoPowerLifting lol 

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A New Direction…

As a group fitness instructor I’m asked almost daily the same simple question – what should I eat? My answer is usually something like this: In general to eat healthy – eat mostly vegetables, berries and fruit, more veggies than berries and more berries than fruit – healthy fats and protein like salmon, avocado, coconut oils, and hard pressed veggie oils (I.e. Extra Virgin), grass fed beef and bison, cage free organic eggs, and poultry; make sure your carbohydrate source is from sweet potatoes, quinoa, or rice (in other words not processed) and stay away from or limit processed sugars and carbohydrates from a box such as cereal, bars, candy… The processing is the main factor that affects long term health…. 
The problem I’ve encountered with this advice is that I’m not following it. The majority of the time I preface this conversation with a brief sentence explaining that “honestly, with an eating disorder it’s hard for me to answer this question but… ” and then I continue with the prior paragraph.

So, after a lot of different diet attempts, and lifestyle types, I’m going to try to take it back to basics. I want to follow my own advice and once I’m comfortable eating by choosing the healthiest options – concentrating on organic, grass fed, and where my food comes from – taking away as much dairy and processed foods as I can – I will dial it down to work with whatever macronutrient profile works best for me (after some trial and error) for my activity level — but my goal here is to really go back to a basic paleo-ish  eating style with emphasis on vegetables and eating whole, clean foods.

What is your favorite meal? How can you make this meal healthier? Can you add vegetables to your current diet? What would that look like for you?   

 

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