Tag: weight loss

Lessons Learned: 10 Days on My Plan

Ten days on my plan, and I am pretty happy with my results. I’m more than pretty happy; I’m actually extremely delighted by them and quite proud of myself. Before I get into my results, I do want to talk about some lessons that I have learned so far. Yes, I’ve learned some valuable lessons in just 10 days.

(Let me preface all of this by saying that while this is a 90-day challenge for myself; it is not a diet. I’m not going to do this challenge, be done, and then go back to eating and behaving like I was before I started. My goal is not only to lose weight and tone up, but to also set myself up with healthy lifestyle changes that will become lifelong habits. In a sense, I am training my body and, more importantly, my mind, to have a completely different relationship when it comes to the food I eat and the time I spend exercising.)

With that being said, here are some things that I have learned in the past 10 days.

  1. I know it’s cliche: but if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. My first weekend on my plan was a rough one. I had a graduation barbecue and a child’s birthday party to attend, one on Saturday, the other on Sunday. Although I tried to plan my eating around them, I realized that I have to be ready for anything. Going to both parties, I had a plan for what I would eat and would not eat while there. What I didn’t count on in either case was what time we would be eating. I ended up being very hungry and, since I hadn’t thought to bring my own snacks, ended up devouring some pizza (3 slices) on Saturday and eating a couple of little bags of chips and a slushie at the Sunday party in order to sustain me until I got home and could find something else to eat (which also wasn’t the healthiest). This week I was better prepared for our faculty luncheon at Cheesecake Factory (no, I didn’t have a slice of cheesecake) and this weekend while enjoying dinner and movie with my bestie (shake for breakfast and lunch and my own snacks for the movie).
  2. Not everyone will understand what you’re trying to do or think that you can do it. It’s not that they are trying to sabotage your goals, but they don’t understand why you won’t take one of the donuts in the break room (They’re free. You deserve them. It’s only one. You only live once) or why you don’t want to order the big burger with the fries at lunch and choose to eat your salad instead. But you can’t let that stop you. After a while, those same people will respect your resolve to stick to your plan, and they may become your biggest cheerleaders or even be persuaded to get on board and make some lifestyle changes of their own.
  3. Don’t keep it around if the temptation is too strong. I am a nibbler or a snacker or whatever you want to call me. For example, in my desk drawer, I had a bag of candy that I used to reward my students. Day by day, I nibbled on a Laffy Taffy or two or some SweeTARTS here or there. On the last day of school, I allowed the students to raid the rest of the candy rather than bring it home with me. If I hadn’t had it there in the first place, I wouldn’t have been tempted to eat some every day. Same thing at home: if you’re not strong enough to say no, don’t keep it in the house.

Some things that have worked for me on my plan:

  1. When I think I’m hungry, I drink some water first. I’ve read about this many times, but like I said before, I’m a “snacker.” I’m also a bored “snacker.” When I am bored or watching TV, all of a sudden I feel hungry or “snackish.” I’ve learned to combat that feeling by drinking water. If I’m still hungry after that, then I will find a healthy snack to eat. Which leads me to number 2!
  2. Keep healthy snacks around. Keep them in the house, at your desk at work, and in your purse. My healthy go-to’s were string cheese, Herbalife’s Vanilla Almond Protein Bar (Amazing!), almonds, single serve kettle corn popcorn (100 calories), or some type of fruit. I’m working on adding other healthy snacks to the lineup this week.
  3. Each day I had two Herbalife shakes: one for breakfast, one for dinner. I ate a healthy lunch, usually a salad with chicken and balsamic vinaigrette. Then I would have 2-3 healthy snacks during the day, plain water, as well as water with my Herbalife tea and aloe. I won’t lie. I still had my cup of coffee each morning. (I can’t help it. I love coffee!) And I had a couple of alcoholic drinks along the way, usually a vodka tonic.
  4. As far as exercise, I worked out probably 3 days total. I love strength training that can count as cardio as well, so it was a lot of circuit training with weights and squats and lunges and other moves to get my heart racing. Now that summer is here and I am off from work, I may exercise a little more or not. But this is proof that it truly is 80% nutrition, 20% fitness, 100% mindset. Just changing my eating habits and mindset about eating helped me to get my results.

What were these results?

I lost 4.1 pounds over the first 10 days! Not to mention that I have more energy to tackle the day!

Isn’t that incredible?!


I cannot wait to see what next 10-day results will be. My goal is to lose a few more pounds and to start toning up!

Stay tuned and thank you for following me on my journey!!!

Butterfly Metamorphosis: My 90-Day Health & Fitness Journey


I know that I can do it.

I’ve done it before, so I can definitely do it again.

I can and I will.

And I am taking you on my journey. Journey to where? To a healthier me, mentally and physically.

Why am I taking you with me? Why am I choosing to do this publicly?

There are two main reasons.

  1. I need accountability. I need people’s eyes watching me, people who know the goals that I’ve set for myself and are watching my every move. It’s a good pressure to have because these are my goals that I have set for myself, goals that I really want to achieve. Knowing that people are watching and waiting to see whether or not I succeed or fail is motivation for me to keep going.

    People are watching…
  2. I’m hurting. Not physically, but emotionally. I’m hurting for the many people who are unhappy with their health, who are sick with preventable illnesses, who have tried and tried again to get in shape but haven’t been successful or have been successful only to fall back off track, for those who may not even realize that they need to change their lifestyle, and even for those who are clueless as to where to start. I want to be MOTIVATION for all of these people. I want them to see what an active, healthy lifestyle looks like and how attainable it is. I want people to see that there is a different way, a better way to live.                                                                                               

My prayer is that others will see what I’m doing and join me on this journey! It’s never too late to start. Whether you’re starting on Day 1 or Day 51. You don’t have to do everything that I am doing, but I hope to inspire some changes in your life, and I am open to suggestions as well! Give me your ideas for new exercises and new healthy meals and snacks. I can use your words of encouragement, your positive vibes, your kick in the you-know-what if I need it! (more…)

Week 1: My Journey to 40

Week one of My Journey to 40 has certainly been a special one for me. It was my first week back in the classroom after our two week Christmas Break. It was not a good week. It was extremely busy and frustrating with many ups and downs, and it almost seemed as if it would overshadow my week 1 goals, but nope, nope, nope. I wouldn’t let any of it get in my way. (See my post about that here.) Here’s a recap of what I managed to accomplish this week.

  1. Fitness Goal – I increased my water intake (although I didn’t reach my goal every day). Next week I will work on meeting that goal each day. Although it might not seem like much to others, I am aiming for the recommended 8 glasses of water a day (64 ounces). Once I hit that goal consistently, I will increase my goal. I also exercised 3 days this week and joined a FitBit challenge with some friends. I’m determined to increase my steps (daily goal of 10,000) so I can move up a few spots in the challenge. On top of all of that,  I’m proud of myself for prepping my lunch for the week which I had gotten pretty lazy about doing.
    Hit those 10,000 steps
    Crushed my Herbalife shake
    My lunch for the week


  2. New Adventure or Trying Something New – While this may not be an exciting adventure to some, this was important for me because it is something that I have been meaning to do for quite some time, and it proved to be quite fruitful. I am a graduate of the awesome, phenomenal, one and only, Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, the best HBCU around (I may be a little bias). For the longest, I have been meaning to go to our local chapter meeting for our FAMU Alumni Association. I finally said enough is enough; it was time for me to support my alma mater, not just brag about it. I’m so glad that I did. When you ask for opportunities to get more involved, God will certainly answer. At the meeting, one committee was looking for someone who could take pictures for their annual calendar fundraiser (hey, that’s me), and they needed someone to help with editing the profiles of people featured in the calendar (hey, that’s me again). So I stepped out of my comfort zone and signed up. I even made sure to speak to the woman in charge of the committee and give her my name and number (something that is out of character for me to do). The other great thing that came from attending this meeting flows into #3 on this list: my Random Act of Kindness.

    Rocking my FAMU gear
  3. RAK – I’ve been looking for more ways to serve the community. I’ve also been looking for ways to serve with my children, to teach them about selflessly serving others, giving back to their community, giving without expecting to receive. At the meeting, there was a guest speaker from a local organization, and why was she attending the meeting? Not only was she a FAMU alumni, she was there representing the organization that was looking for more volunteers to help in their shelter. Our chapter gives regularly to the organization, but the organization also really needed people to come in and volunteer as well. And yes, children are welcomed. With  Dr. Martin Luther King Day in just a couple of days, the organization was having a special day of service on Monday, the FAMU Alumni Association was looking for more people to volunteer to help, so I signed my boys and me up to volunteer. We’ll be there bright and early Monday morning ready to serve. (Next week’s post will give details about how this went).   4. Last but not least, I finally settled on a preliminary draft of my logo for my photography business, Natural Soul Photography. The best part of it is the fact that it was drawn by my 14-year-old son! What do you think? I can’t wait to get it on products (business cards, shirts, hats)  and move forward with increasing my business. This has been a long journey with getting my business off the ground, but I see a promising future.
    My son created my logo for my photography company!

    Stick around! The next eight weeks will bring bigger and better things! I’m making great plans for some fun adventures, random acts of kindness, and business moves!