Tuesday, June 10, 2014

My Final Curtain Call

It's been two years and now, this post is going to be my final post, it's time to move on. I've thought about this for a couple months now. I didn't know when it was going to happen, but I knew it was time. I've thought about how I wanted this post to go and what I really wanted to say. Every time I sat down to write, it's like my fingers never stopped and I had so much to say.

I have always loved writing. It's such an outlet to get my thoughts down on paper or on a computer. It's like I'm telling my secrets to a friend or sharing my life stories as they happen, as silly as it sounds. I think for me though, in these past couple months, I have shifted my focus. It isn't important to me to keep up with this blog anymore because what really matters to me is not writing my life, but actually living it.

When I look back on this time in my life, I don't want to think of how much time was wasted sitting on a computer typing and uploading pictures, but of the fun I had with my sons and husband, out doing things together as a family.

Unlike some, unmentioned blogs, this blog was not made to see how many followers I could get. This blog was not made to get an ego boost, every time someone posted a comment. This blog was not made to show off things I've bought or promote things, so I could get free stuff. I do not rely on this blog for a source of income, because my husband and I have jobs and I don't need this to survive. This blog was made for me.

This blog has been absolutely amazing for me. I have learned a lot about myself in the past two years I've been writing in this little space of mine. I've learned I am stronger than I believe I actually am, physically and mentally. I've learned I don't always have to rely on other people for things and that I can be more independent.

This blog has brought me out of my comfort zone and kept me accountable with running and weight loss. Though I've fallen off the wagon more times than I'd like to admit, I've never given up.

A lot of things have happened since I last wrote, so let me just do a little update ::

* My oldest son has graduated from Preschool and will be starting Kindergarten in the Fall. My youngest son had his promotion night to move up to the two year old room. My heart just explodes for those two. Watching them grow up every day is something I don't ever want to take for granted.

* My husband and I have planned an amazing trip for our six year wedding anniversary. I am beyond excited to go!

* I chopped most of my hair off and I love it! It's so much more healthier and so easy to manage. I do however want to get it cut shorter, but I'm afraid I just don't have the balls to just do it.

* I am still signed up for the marathon in St. Louis, in October and my training starts this month. I will say that this will be the only marathon that I run, but I want to say that I could do it, so I'm not going to back out.

* I have started clean eating (again ... don't judge me) and I have to say that it was such a great decision. I have more energy and it's so rewarding when the number on the scale keeps going down.

* I am running a 5K series again this summer. One 5K every month until September and it's keeping me accountable to stay focused on my goals of getting more healthy.

Don't forget that I'm not gone for good, if you want to see how my weight loss progress is going, check out my new hair cut, or follow me on our anniversary trip coming up, you know you can always follow me on Instagram {here}

I want to thank each and every one of you who have been reading along on my journey. To each one of you who have left me positive messages of encouragement and love and those of you who have become great friends to me. It truly means so much to me!

XOXO

This is my final curtain call.







Thursday, May 8, 2014

Recap & Decisions




I haven't blogged in the longest time and I could say life has been happening and I don't have time, but even though life has been happening, I do have time. For some reason, I've just lost the love for blogging anymore. It used to be fun to come to my little space on the Internet and share what was going on with me, my life and my family. Now, I'm just kind of over it. Another thing too, my laptop is still pissed at me for not saving it from my son, who spilled a drink all over it.


Honestly, I don't remember the last time I actually wrote something that was going on with me, so I'll just recap a little bit.


I had signed up for the Diva Half Marathon a year ago and due to family things going on, I decided it wasn't right for me to travel to Myrtle Beach to run it. So I let the weekend go by and to be completely honest, it hurt me in a way, looking at pictures from the race when it was over. I wanted to run that race so badly and it's the first race I decided to bow out of. That won't be happening again, it's not a good feeling. It felt like I gave up and though it was things beyond my control, it didn't settle with me very well.


Easter came and went pretty quickly. My Hubs and I took our boys to an Easter egg hunt at their school and had pictures taken with the Easter Bunny. It rained on and off that day, but the boys had such a great time. Sunday, Cam sang at church and it was so cute to see him on stage. The rest of the day, we just hung out at the house as a family and it was just relaxing.


As of April 9th, I told myself that I would give myself until July 9th to get to the weight I want to be at. My starting weight then was 166 pounds, my goal weight is 135 pounds, but I would at this point, settle just to get down to 145 pounds. I've been so motivated to get to where I want to be. I'm so tired of being overweight. I'm so tired of wearing certain clothes to hide the flaws that look at me every day, in the mirror.


As of right now, almost 1 month in, I'm down 6 pounds. I've been seriously stuck and it's starting to piss me off. I get on the scale and that thing does not move an ounce. It's so damn frustrating!! A couple days ago, I contacted a Cross fit facility in my town. I have always been stubborn as shit and with this weight loss, it's no difference. I want to do it on my own! I've done the AdvoCare cleanses and they have helped a lot, but my goals go beyond just losing weight. I admit, I need help.


I want more muscle definition and I want stronger legs. I want to be able to run faster and for longer distances because my legs are becoming stronger. I still am signed up for the marathon in St. Louis in October and my stomach still gets knots thinking about it. 26.2 miles of running. If it's my one and only marathon I ever run, I want to say I did it and I finished strong.


So back to Cross fit. Reading up on it, doing research, talking to people who have done it, it's so intense. I spoke to the owner of the Cross fit facility and he reassured me it isn't what I have pictured in my head. When I think of Cross fit, I think hardcore people lifting heavy weights with rock hard bodies and dedication that I've never yet experienced with working out. The owner told me it is honestly for anyone and that everyone had to start somewhere. He told me I could come to a class for free whenever I wanted just to check the place out and see if it was something I was interested in.


Now listen, if you know me, or if you've even just met me in person, I am not one to just walk up to somebody and strike up a conversation. I'm not loud or outspoken, I love to be around people, but I like to just sit back and people watch. So for me to go by myself, to doing something I've never done before, with people I don't know, I'm terrified.


I've been going back and forth if it's something I want to do. I just need discipline and I need someone there telling me what I need to do and what will work. I'm completely clueless in a gym, minus a treadmill, and I want to be shown what to do. There are two coaches at the facility, one to teach the class and the other to walk around and make sure everyone is doing everything correctly, so no one causes injury. It's peer energized and motivated, but I also know if you start slacking or failing, they are all up in your face Jillian Michaels style.


I have a decision to make, I need to decide if sitting in on a Cross fit class is really going to benefit me. I need to see if it's going to get me to where I want to be with my body and getting healthy.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

I'll Be Back

So I haven't posted in a while and I feel like I have so much to talk about. Easter, my weight loss, and recipes to share. The problem is, my littlest one may or may not have spilled my drink all over my laptop. So, needless to say, my laptop is a little pissed and hasn't been working right. 

I'd use my Hubs' but it doesn't have any pictures on it and I'm too lazy to do the extra work to upload them. So for now, you get an explanation of what's going on, while I blog from my iPhone. (womp womp)

I'll get back to it next week, but for now, I'll be soaking up the Florida sun on the beach with my Hubs, while we're on a mini vacation without our littles. (Thanks Mom and Dad) 

As always, you can follow me on Instagram ---> http://instagram.com/life_in_bloom/  I post more there than anywhere

Have a great weekend, loves! 

Xoxo

Ashleigh 


Monday, April 21, 2014

Boston Strong

I was going to write a post about my weekend, but I don't think it's quite fitting today. Today, is the Boston Marathon and I will be watching and listening to it all day. Good luck to everyone racing it! #BostonStrong







Friday, April 11, 2014

Healthy Eating Grocery List

Have you ever just felt this overwhelming feeling of "anything is possible?" I haven't felt that way in a long time and when I did have that "let's do this" attitude, it didn't last too long.

A couple days ago, I was reading old posts that I had written and I was thinking, "Where in the hell did this girl go? Can she please come back and kick my ass back in gear?" Then all of a sudden it was like the fire was lit and I got that feeling again. If you've felt it before, then you know what I mean. If you haven't, well, then I probably sound crazy.



Moving on ....



I do so much better, when I have a plan laid out for me, especially when it comes to eating better. So that same night, I wrote up recipes, meal ideas, and snack options. Following the AdvoCare 10 day cleanse, I now have a plan for the next 10 days of what I'm going to eat. When the 10 days are over, I'll find more recipes to try and keep this healthy train moving.


The best thing for me is to have a grocery list that will help me stay on track and to stay away from my beloved Starbucks. Per usual, I'll be posting before and after pictures of my progress This time though, I'll be posting new healthy (AdvoCare friendly) recipes that I'll be trying and hopefully love.

Here are my go to foods when it's time to act right and eat better.

Added to this is almonds, peanut butter, and sweet potatoes, but I don't eat them too often, since I don't need the carbs.* I also ONLY drink water, which kills me, but after a few days, it really isn't so bad and when my mind is focused, my body isn't really craving caffeine and sugar.



* I am NOT a dietitian. I did not go to school for nutrition, I just do what works for me and my body.



This list seems so obvious as to what kind of healthy foods to buy, but these are just my top choices. I have recipes that I've tried in the past that I've loved (here, here, and here) and all the veggies can be used in so many different recipes or just raw as snacks.



I'm excited to start this over. I've been fighting with the same 4 to 5 pounds this month and I'm so sick of feeling tired and uncomfortable. I'm not at a healthy weight right now and it shows in so many ways.




I've been eating healthy for the past 3 days now and I've had some side effects. You all know I love my Starbucks and since I gave it up (and soda) I've been having bad headaches. I just have to struggle through it because I know it won't last long.

So who's with me? Let's lose some weight together and feel better about ourselves!













Monday, April 7, 2014

Updates and Announcements

Since last week, I feel like I've just been going non stop and haven't had a minute to just sit down and relax. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart, for the prayers and thoughtful messages that were sent for my grandma. She is doing better, but things aren't the same anymore. I'd rather not get into the details, but it's going to be a long time before things will get back to some what normal.

In less than a week, Cam has lost his two bottom teeth and well, the Tooth Fairy wasn't quite ready. At least not the second time. When he lost his first tooth, the Tooth Fairy wanted to make it special, so she gave him $4.


The second time, the Tooth Fairy only had a $5 and $10. So, well, Cam got $5 for his second one. Then he caught me off guard by asking me why he got more the second time. "Um ... go ask your Daddy!"


My little monkey turned 5 years old last Wednesday and we had asked him if he wanted a birthday party with all of his friends, or if he wanted to go to Legoland. He said he wanted all his friends to go to Legoland (smart kid!) He said he wanted to go to Legoland, so we did a small family party and will be heading to Legoland soon. The family party was on Saturday and Cam (and Aiden) had so much fun. Since my Mom is in Illinois with my Grandma, we did FaceTime, so they could "be there" too.

The tradition continued of me making Cam's birthday cake. This time, it was the Captain America shield to go with the Avengers theme.



 
Now this next "announcement" I'm not too excited to talk about. I've been going back and forth about it for a couple weeks now. I've been signed up for the Diva Half Marathon in Myrtle Beach, for almost a year now. I signed up for it right after I ran my first half marathon in DC. I have been looking forward to this race for a long ass time. Pink boas, tiaras, pink tutus, champagne and roses, it sounds like such a girly girl race and perfect for me.
 
 
I have decided though, with family things going on right now, it's just better not to go. It's the first race I've decided to bow out of. I'm not happy about it, especially since I've waited so long to run it, but I feel like it's what's best for me and my family right now. I'll be keeping an eye on the Diva's website though and will be running this race once they announce another one, close enough to me. Now, just isn't the best time.
 
Are you running any races soon?
Which ones?