So here is the weekly update after a really great almost four pound loss this week I gained a wee bit back and I am ok with that.  I know my body and I know how it likes this up down up down game.  If at the end of the month I am less I count that as a victory.  I did stay true and try and get out to exercise more which I was happy with.

I also had a sort of NSV (non scale victory) if you will this week.  When I applied to be a Mamavation Mom I really wanted to have this be the first of many steps in a weight loss and healthiness journey.  So I promised myself that I didn't want to be that mom who sat round and had her kids blobbed out in front of the TV.  So on Sunday I got and started back with Couch to 5k to get me over my running hump (I can do a mile straight but that is about it so I figured try this for awhile and get on a planned routine). So I went out and did about two miles in 30min.  Then I got back took a breather and then said to my son, lets go for a bike ride.  My goal for him is to get off his training wheels this summer.  So he and I went out and did a two mile ride.  Not much on a bike but for me who doesn't ride much and him it was huge.  I was proud I was tired after running but I decided being a healthy mom and setting a healthy example was more important to me then relaxing.  

I am starting to realize that the stuff with the scale will fall into line, but what I am doing in these early months post Mamavation is finding my way to a healthy lifestyle and for that I am very pleased with how I am doing.

Up this week...my goal was to track all my food this week (so far one day done!).  It was also to stick with the every other day running schedule.  On a personal note we head out for our family vacation this  Sunday so I want to have one of my two graduate courses done before I leave.

How was your week everyone???
So I know this post is about two weeks past due but I honestly needed some time to really put my feelings into words about this race.  For a long time...since the first time I lost weight and got down to what would now be my goal weight (it wasn't then but I was 24 and stupid) I wanted to do a race.  After having kids and gaining back all that weight I felt defeated....most days I still do.  The effort to loose that weight is tremendous and even though I did the Mamavation thing knowing that I have years of hard work in front of me to loose the weight and keep it off is overwhelming.  So when I decided awhile back that I would give loosing weight my best effort (If I am being honest it has been a good effort not best lately) I decided I would also give the whole couch to 5k thing a try.  Once I was chosen I knew I had to complete a 5k (even though virtual) for them at the end of my campaign.  So I stated training and it sucks real bad...and months later it still sucks.  I have tried couch to 5k, then went with the Mamavation plan, and I think I am going back to C25K.  So I decided I was going to work real hard and my goal would be to be able to run an entire race by the Mystic Aquarium 5k in October.  Well back to this race.  When my good friend Sarah (check out her blog here) asked if I would join her for the Go Red for Women race that took place in Elizabeth Park (started by Elizabeth Colt and is has amazing rose gardens in full bloom this time of year) I said yes.  On race day is was hot...I mean really hot.  Over 90 and super humid but I didn't bail.  I committed to doing the best I could and running in my first real race.  Despite the heat it was amazing.  The people who were cheering me on, the course itself through the really nice sections of Hartford and West Hartford, and just the fact that I was there and running as much as I could.  My final time wasn't great, but it was my best time to date.  I can't lie I cried the last 1/4 mile because you know what I was doing it.  I was going to cross a finish line.  200 pound, overweight, unathletic me was going to cross that finish line.  It was huge, it still is!  It makes me realize that if I can do that-and it was hard, I can cross any finish line.  That finish line for me isn't just about running it is about getting healthy.  I have to realize there will be good runs and bad ones (like my most recent run sucked probably because I have been being lazy and not eating as well as I should).  There is always more races to run...there is always a new day to work on getting healthy.  This is a process both the health thing and the running thing.  I am glad to be doing it.   I can't wait for the day when I am able to run the whole thing!  Below are some pictures from my race....I can't wait for another one to show you more!

This is my friend Sue from work who only started running a few years ago she is a great inspiration and a huge cheerleader for me.  It was great to see her there!
This was before the race with the rose gardens in the background....although you can't really see them.
So here is my photo montage-I am serious proud as peacock over this.  I know some people think it may be silly but you know what its my blog and I will celebrate what is a really huge achievement for me!
So although the heat here in CT has been so brutal that I couldn't really exercise this week I was able to loose 4.8 pounds of the 5 I gained during my I don't know what phase.  I was very happy that I lost this much and am felling a bit more back on track.  My only issue is the lack of fitness which has a ton to do with the heat here in CT.  Even at 6am it is over 80 and too hot.  I have been gardening and keeping up with the kids and going to the pool, but not the kind of fitness I was dong with Mamavation and I also know this is what kind of exercise I need to do in order to loose the weight.  So today as part of a Virtual 5K that Melissa from www.mytwomiracles.com put together I am considering myself back on track.  How was everyone else's week?

My goals for this upcoming week
Track my food
Run two-three times
Strength Train 3 times this week

Also, in case you missed it I am doing a giveaway on my blog for a Copy of a great money saving book.  Come check it out and enter the giveaway.

So I was so excited to get invited to two different Connecticut blogger events this week.  One I was unable to attend because I was a little bit under the weather and it was 1000 degrees so I didn't think that was the best idea.  So the event that I attended on Thursday night was a We love Local event sponsored by Whole Foods in Glastonbury.  I was able to bring my dear friend Gina as my plus one and it was a great time.  The whole food chefs as well as some local companies had a great spread of local goods for us to taste test.  Below is are my pictures from the event along with a copy my favorite recipe from the event.  
Upon entering the event we were greeted by these beauties fresh native organic strawberries (on sale for 1.99) paired with some amazing local chocolate in three different flavors.  The most interesting one was by far the chocolate with the corn flakes

Next up was this amazing fresh local corn.  The Whole Foods chef prepared it by grilling it and glazing it with a mix of soy sauce and rice wine vinegar.  I would never have thought to put these items together on corn but it was amazing.  There was a lovely little bit of caramelization on the corn-I even sampled the ones without butter. 

One of my favorite dishes was a fresh vegetable salad.  It contained various types of beans, red onion, tomatoes, and some Chinese noodles on top.  Then for on top of the salad was an amazing vinaigrette that had local fresh raspberries and blackberries.  I can say that it was a little bit odd with the crunch noodles, crisp veggies, and sweet dressing, but it was delicious nevertheless.   Although I might not make the salad (I liked it not loved it) the dressing is a must make again.  

This was the item that I needed to control myself with a bit.  Since I am lactose intolerant I really wanted to sample  all the flavors but I knew my stomach would not go for that.  This ice cream company is based in norwalk where my BFF lives and they are tea inspired flavors.  AMAZING.  I tried the Masala Chai, Ginger Matcha, and Chamomile Honey.  Check them out here 

For drink samples there was yummy frozen hot cocoa from www.cissetrading.com  and these tasty treats.  These are both yummy drinks or drink starters if you like a cocktails.  I LOVED THESE!!! In fact I looked around Whole Foods for them to buy some.  I love anything sour so these were right up my alley.  My favorite were the first two which I would so drink over crushed ice or mixed with seltzer.  For me this was a perfect beverage for the super hot 100 degree CT weather.  Check them out here.  

Lastly on the tour was delicious homemade sauce.  Now considering that my date and myself are Italian girls who learned from a Nona how to make sauce, we can officially be called a sauce snobs!  So we were skeptical of a jarred sauce.  We were pleasantly surprised.  This sauce is made lovingly in small batches the same way that both of us make sauce at home.  It was sampled with a great bread to dip in, but you know it was good when I was drinking it out of the little cup it was served in. Now nothing beats homemade, but this is a great sauce to have in the pantry for those times where there is no time to go homemade.  Check out the website here 

Now as I went to go write this post I realized that I had no pictures of my absolute favorite sample of the entire night.  It was a lazy man's blueberry crisp.  Let me start by saying that I have been dying to go blueberry picking because I love fresh blueberries.  This was an super easy recipe and delicious.  I asked and am allowed to share the recipe so here it is.....as zoo as I get blueberries I will be making this!

Blueberry Granola Crisp
1 Jar 365 blueberry jam
2 Pints of blueberries
2 Cups of Mainely Maple Granola (found in the bulk dept.)
On stove top mix 1/2 jar of blueberry jam with 1 pint of blueberries. Cooking until it is warm, melted, and bubbly.
Cool mixture for a few minutes. Pour stove top mixture into a baking pan (as your bottom layer).
Next add 1 pint of fresh blueberries on top of the cooked mixture.
Next add granola as a top layer.
Chill and serve.

A great big thank you to Whole Foods for the invite...I can't wait for the next one!
I can't believe it is already the weekend and it is weekend review time.  This week I read Budget Savvy Diva's Guide to slashing your grocery bill by 50% or more by Sara Lundberg.  For those of you who do not know who the Budget Savvy Diva is she is a blogger who has made popular the act of saving you money with all her tips.  She has an amazing blog that can be found here .   She has also written several great books with numerous money saving tips.  In this particular book she focuses on how you can save big at the grocery store.  Although I like to think of my self as a savvy shopper who doesn't go too overboard at the grocery store, there were several helpful hints in this book that I plan on using next time we hit the stores.  The first thing that I really liked about the book is Ms. Lundberg starts at the beginning with menu planning. This is something that I am not always successful at. She talks about how you go from not planning at all to taking baby sets to becoming a supreme planner.  I like that she uses easy tips and gives sort of the step by step on how to get more budget friendly.  I enjoy the if you are doing nothing, here are the baby steps, then the next steps, then the final big picture.  Without giving away all of the Diva's ideas my other favorite part of the book was the recipes.  The end of the book is just filled with numerous budget friendly recipes, many of which are also kiddo friendly or good for those with picky eaters (kids or adults) in the house.  In fact, I bookmarked a few for making this week.  I would say if you are trying to trim your budget a bit this book is worth the purchase price because I am sure you would save that much in your first few trips to the store.  Yet, even better than buying it.....you can win it.  Enter below with the rafflecopter to win a copy!

Also if you have written a review on a product or book don't forget to link it below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Take me out to the ballgame

It has come to my attention thanks to Wendy over at www.connecticutbloggers.com that I should have a clear public and disclosure policy.  So here it is for your reading enjoyment folks!

This policy is valid from 18 July 2013

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Ok so its time for a little honesty around here.  I have been talking about how great Mamavation was (and believe me it was) there has been a downside as well.  For whatever reason after the campaign ended my eating disorder kicked back into high gear.  I don't know if it was the nature of weight in and pressure that I felt or maybe it was that I was working so hard and following a plan very strictly, or the stress of the end of a shitty school year but my mind went crazy.  Now thankfully I wasn't full on binging but there were days where I overate, there were a lot of times I ate crap, then felt like crap, then ate more crap because I felt like crap.  It is a viscous cycle and I hate it and often times this is very very hard to stop.  
I also need to make clear in no way am I blaming Mamavation that group I know has saved my life in terms of health.  I also know because of them and their support is the reason I have gotten back on track.  My good friend Julie (who is also my WW buddy) said hey being in the ditch is ok as long as it isn't the grand canyon.  So I decided that as of Thursday of last week that was it, I was getting my shit together and getting back on track.  I have committed to going to every weekly weight watchers meeting for the rest of the summer and doing my best to track my food.  I also am trying to get back into the forums and back on twitter to get some support and follow the new mom's in the campaign.

I am thankful though that throughout this I have continued training for 5k's (I did my first official last weekend I will post about that soon).  I think that is the reason that in 6 weeks I have only gained 5 pounds (not only but you know what I mean).  Also, I have only really gained like 3.5 of my Mamavation weight back because I lost some more after that so my WW weight is different.  I know it is confusing which is why I am going to just go with my WW weight from now on.  Its summer and my math skills are bad during the school year.

I just wanted to say I am so thankful to be part of the Mamavation community and that I have a great real life support group to help me through these times where I am in the ditch and I have lots of hands helping me out!  

Onward in my healthiness journey, have a great week people!
  A few months ago one of the gals over at Mamavation posted how she has written a children's book and I was of course super excited for her.  How many us have a big dream and then get to see that dream come to life.  I was so proud for her.  Then she asked for people to review and you know me...I am always going to be first in line jumping up and down saying pick me for a review of a children's book (in fact there was a great study just done that says your child's success in school is most tied to how many books are in your home not how smart mom and dad are!) 

Anywho, Lydia (who is also running to be one of the Mamavation Campaign 17 Moms) sent me a copy that was autographed for my kids which I  loved.  Let me start by saying the book was a bit too old for my 3 year old, but she still loved this pictures.  So this was more of a Dy and Mom book-hence the photo.  

Anyways, the short story focuses on a group of girls in summer who have an encounter with a ghost.  Now don't worry the story isn't scary (it did have a moment where Dy was a bit scared but he made it through).  In the end the group of young girls pay tribute to their ghost through a kind act.  It is really a cute story with a nice ending.  The book as really great pictures and easy to read.  It isn't a really young kid book, in fact I would say it was a wee old for Dy but he is also a huge reader so he could read most of it on his own, but we like to read together.  

I have gotten to "know" Lydia over the last few months through Mamavation and Twitter and this is a great venture for her into book publishing.  If you are looking for a book for your kids to read this summer with a fun theme go pick it up and support another mom who is making her dream come true.  

You can follow Lydia over on twitter by clicking here, you can check out more about the book here, or you can just stop by here or here to buy it.  Also big shout out to her illustrator who did an amazing job check them out here.  

Lydia-Job well done my dear I am so proud to know you and that I get to share in this moment of your book debut.  Congrats and get back to your Mamavation Hazing 

So have you reviewed anything this week....if so link up here.  I would love to give you some love on your reviews!


First let me say how crazy it is that it is already July.  I am so excited for all the finalists who are in the process on the way to becoming Mamavation Mom's.  I know how nerve wracking this is for them and I wish them all well.

Although my eating has not been great-not horrible but not great....I have been running. Every other day and on Sunday I ran a practice 5k.  Although my overall time only dropped by like 5 seconds I was able to get my first mile time down to 13 minutes which was great and it means I am running the whole thing and at a good pace too.

My goal is to get my eating back under control it has been hard the first week being home with my kiddos and making the transition but I have a goal for the summer which is to be as active as possible and get down to about 210 or less before school starts again.  I hope you all have a great week!

How has everyone's week been??