My First Entry. Hi, Hola, guten Tag, Dia dhuit!

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Health. Beauty. Fitness. It fills our timelines on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube. We hear it on the news, see it in our NY’s resolutions, we envy our neighbor down the street who has it. And of course, we want it. Who wouldn’t?

My name is Jenny Maguire. I am 5’4 and weigh around 145lbs. I am currently at my heaviest weight. For many of you, that may not seem like a lot. Fine. But I am eager to lose weight and become sculpted like a Spartan Warrior Woman or Angelina Jolie in Tomb Raider.

As I say this, I’ve just run upstairs to grab a recent gift given to me by an instructor- OREO BIG CRUNCH BAR. 5 pieces is 230 Calories, 8g of Sat Fat, 20g of Sugar. Lets’ see, I ate…either 12 or 16 pieces. So that’s 552 Calories, 19.2g of Sat Fat and 48g of Sugar- at best. Ah, great job Jenny. I doubt a Spartan Warrior Woman would be caught grazing on such a meal (which it is a meal- 552 Calories ya’ll).

 

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The World Health Organization recommends 25g of sugar a day, or around 5% of your daily intake of food.  So at a whopping 48g, I’ve nearly doubled their expectation of me.

Does anyone else have this problem? I know the facts. I know whats good for my health and the consequences of bad health. I want to be a beauty queen. And yet, I’ve just found myself eating a lunches worth of a candy bar.

Well, Welcome to my life.

I enjoy writing and I’ve found myself in recent years gravitating towards entertainment surrounding beauty, diet, fitness and general lifestyle-related material. I am an avid watcher of YouTube but don’t have the guts for it and so ultimately no glory either. Instead, I’d like to start this blog in the hopes of reaching out to new people and discussing topics of similar interest.

Please stay tuned for more, including

-My weight loss (I hope)

-Whole food plant based meals

-Fitness (as a 3rd year Doctor of Physical Therapy Student I actually do know something)

-Beauty

-Photography

-How to live a happy life

-etc. (potentially including pictures of my cat)

 

Yours Truly, JennyXO

 

 

 

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Week 2 of Weight Loss- Are things starting to shift in my favor?

Hello, everyone. Thanks for stopping by!

It is officially week 2 of my weight loss journey. Currently it feels like week 20- I think school has gotten the best of me. I’m going to need to increase my sleeping time to match up with the amount of brain work I am having to do this final semester. I literally feel like I am asleep while trying to type this blog at the moment!

So I have good news and bad news. Which would you like first?

Okay, the bad news is I’m still the SAME EXACT WEIGHT. 139lb. lol, maybe I’m just going to be stuck here forever despite whatever attempts I make at change. Just kidding, that’s probably the sleep deprivation talking because as I know from all my schooling, that’s not how the body works! It adapts to the stresses we place on it. So, in time, I will start to lose weight, as long as I’m burning more calories than I consume. Truth is, I haven’t considered my calorie intake at all (and not because its not what causes you to lose weight- it is!!!). I guess I don’t do it because I don’t want to count calories. That’s a lot of work and I’m not sure I could make it a lifestyle. But also, the food I am cooking at home is healthy and nutritious and I don’t over eat at home at all. My over indulgence in calories really just stems from the cheat meals I like and well, counting calories would probably just increase my cortisol levels when I’m fixed on having me a deep fried something.

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Good news? I received some very kind comments this week. One of my classmates stated that they were under the impression I had lost weight because my legs looked so toned! Thanks leg press<3. Also, a random stranger at Walmart, well, I caught her staring at me and when I did she said, “You have such beautiful legs!” It’s amazing how one compliment can improve your day. What we say to others carries more power than we often give credit for! Remember to always be kind.

Despite being the same weight, it’s very possible I’ve gained a little muscle mass and lost a little bit of fat- unfortunately, I can’t be sure, although I feel it may be true!

You want more good news? Totally! So, today I was FATIGUED- scratch that, I am fatigued. I ALMOST did not make it to the gym. On top of that, I started day dreaming of getting taco bell after our study session ended. I mean, I’d been in class since 8 am-12pm. Studying from 12-4. I was hungry, tired and stressed and new I would be studying til 8pm tonight. Yet, somehow I found the inspiration to change course and go to the gym. After the gym, I came home and made food in the house. It was a close call because Arby’s is right next to the gym and yum they have such good curly fries.

It’s amazing how we can push ourselves even when we have zero motivation. Humans and all animals really are amazing.

And, once I finally made it to the gym today I ran at an intensity of 5.4mph which equates to running 11:06 minutes a mile. Previously, I had been running 5.2mph equating to 11:31 minutes a mile. My peak heart rate during running at this new speed remained below 176bmp!

Okay, there’s one last good thing I really want to share. I feel like food can actually go in the good news category this week!!!!!!! I never thought I’d say that but it hasn’t been bad. I cheated on Saturday and got pizza and chik-fil-a. F.Y.I chick-fil-a does a veggie wrap- it’s not on their menu but just ask. Otherwise, I ate healthy, delicious, Whole Food Plant Based meals.

Hopefully, I will find the time later this week to upload some of the meals  I’ve been eating that have been a bit different than last week. That’s all I can say for now, literally, I’m falling asleep.

I hope whatever journey you are on you are finding success and happiness

Yours Truly, Jenny XO

 

 

“Morning,” A Poem: Because Health and Wellness

Yesterday I started a course in Health and Wellness. What comes to your mind when you think of the definitions of the words “health” and “wellness”? Many of us conjure up images of tan, buff blondes running the beach or bulky men moving tires around a parking lot. You may think of a healthy salad topped with walnuts and dried cranberries and of course vinaigrette dressing (not my favorite fyi). Or perhaps you think of meditation and Yoga, mental health and happiness. A cup of coffee on a cool crisp morning, doing well in work, investing time in your personal relationships.

All of these are right! According to our first lecture, wellness is “An active process of becoming aware of and making choices toward a more successful existence.”  What a beautiful thing. Wellness is so wonderful because it’s a part of you and what makes you feel more fulfilled in life. It’s not up to anyone else to decide your wellness. Wellness is a process, a part of life, an experience of evolving, growing, being.

Health is a part of well-being. And not just physically, but emotionally, mentally, socially. It is not purely the absence of a disease, or a set of sculpted abs. The health and wellness adventure is such a wonderful experience and we are all on different paths. Be careful not to judge others. One persons health and wellness may be very different from yours. Some people like to take a journey of moderation, others may move slow and steady finding joy in each new experience, some are high energy and revel in each new milestone. Whichever way they are choosing to do it, whatever way they’re seeking their own truth and happiness support it and help them along the way with advice and encouragement.

I want to make sure on this journey that I am embarking on, I do not forget all of the aspects of my health and my wellness. And I want to make sure I include these things as part of my blog when possible.

So today, I am sharing with you a favorite re-invention of a poem I wrote ages ago as a child. Unfortunately, the original is long lost. However, I remembered so many lines from the original poem since it resonated with me at the time, I was able to piece together a near similar version. It’s simple as it’s a reflection of the morning I wrote it: Sitting at a cabin on the side of a mountain with a river running nearby. It was fall and dawn was just breaking. It was a moment of simple pleasure. I’ve also captured a few photos from my experiences at this particular place.

I had posted this in a different setting recently but decided to delete it because again, I feel this journey needs to include all aspects of my health. I hope this brings you some joy as it did me.

Morning

The Mountain

 

All is still.

A bird chirps, a leaf lands

On the river below;

Green, gold, orange, red.

The river flows,

Flow down and know waterfall.

The river flows,

Flow down upon the mountain.

The breaking of day;

Wake now sun

And bring light

To what lay still

upon the mountain.

 

 

Does your definition of health or wellness differ? What active process are you going through to better your life? I’d love to know! Leave me a comment down below.

Yours Truly, JennyXO

Change Isn’t Easy: Weight Loss Week 1

What is success?

 How does one meet their goals?

What is wrong with me?

I want to be a success story.

Oh, boy. Hey everybody! I am a few days late getting this blog post up but please forgive me. I just returned to school to complete my final semester of classes as a physical therapy student. It has involved a lot packing, driving and one last hooray at the beach in Reedville, VA- a beautiful “town” on the water thats isolated, wooded, beachy, organic, a green and blue beauty! It feels so great to say I’m close to graduating- it has been a loooong road getting here. Never did I think I could overcome so much to become a PT. Anyway, on with the main show.

As I stated in my previous blog post, I didn’t have the backbone for a “before photo.” However, during the trip to Reedville I got a photo on the beach and I am willing to share it and hope it can serve as an idea for where I am starting with my weight. I will admit that the fact that I’m willing to post it means it doesn’t show all of my imperfections up close or even very well for that matter. But I think its still useful.

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Ughhhhh.

Alright. Here we go.

There’s something I don’t want to tell you.

So its with deep regret I am here to inform you that I have lost NO weight. In fact, I may have gained a pound. 140lbs. What a great start to my first week of weight loss, what do you think? Where is my Spartan Warrior drive that needs to match my Spartan Warrior body?

So, lets dive first into what I did right this week! Because it wasn’t all bad.

I made it to the gym three times this week, meeting my exercise goal. I ran for 25 minutes at 5.2 mph, with a 5 minute warm up and cool down at 3.5mph. My HR stayed above 160bpm during the middle to end of my running and in fact it was typically 170+bpm. Following the treadmill, I completed 5 weight machines: leg extension at 100lbs, hip abduction 80lbs, hamstring curls 20 lbs, lat pulldowns 65-85 lbs and chest press 40 lbs. Biggest success of the week: I actual managed to run for 25 minutes without stopping and also I increased my lat pulldown from 65 to 85 pounds!

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A lot of my meals for the week were also healthy and plant based! Here’s a brief rundown of the meals I ate at home throughout the weak:

  • Breakfast: Baked banana, oat and peanut butter balls- it’s super easy, fast and delicious! The recipe can be found at https://frommybowl.com/budget-friendly-vegan-breakfast-ideas/. Or I had watermelon- a staple in my summer diet.
  • Lunch: Soup! One of my favorites actually that I have created from a mixing of two recipe from Forks Over Knives. In it includes 2 tomatoes, 1 cup corn, 1 cup whole grain pasta, 1 onion, 1 carrot, 1 cup of lentils and 1 can of cannellini beans. Plus plenty of delicious seasonings.
  • Dinner: Chili- a new recipe actually. You can find this one on the Forks Over Knives website at https://www.forksoverknives.com/recipes/black-bean-chili/#gs.46SQoP8. Making it was a little outside of my comfort zone but I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it! I’ve found as I grow into this plant based lifestyle that I have to be willing to try new things. The ingredients include 5 tomatoes, 3 bell peppers, 1/2 red onion, 2 cans of black beans, 3 celery stalks, 1 cup of corn, 1/2 bunch of kale and tons of delicious seasoning again. 40057897_2242726195755543_8105836999727906816_n
  • Snacks: My breakfast foods often substituted as a snack option. I also mixed in buffalo sauce with original flavored hummus and used my leftover carrots and celery to dip, along with a few wheat thins.

Overall, I learned a lot this week and grew in my exercises and in my meal planning. I also learned that feeling accountable to this blog was a fantastic way to motivate me while I was in the gym! And, I mean, just look at this fridge!

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Now lets talk about what went wrong. Because a lot went wrong. Did I mention I enjoy cheat meals…like a ton.

This is going to be really embarrassing to post but I want to be honest. So the weekend following my first blog post was horrendous. I ate out several times and drank quite a bit – I can’t even recall how much I ate out/drank that’s how much it was! During the week, I was driven by cravings and I ate taco bell twice. I had subway at team building day for school. I ate Sheetz nachos and a bagel during our trip to Reedville. In Reedville, I was served a breakfast sweet and then ate goldfish.

As you can see, I had a lot of victory’s and a lot of failures.

All in all I’m not surprised I haven’t lost weight! That’s a large amount of “cheats” meals. To the point I think we could agree its hardly cheating but more like my regular diet. That’s very hard for me to admit. But along with gym motivation, I found this blog is helping me to be honest with myself. I think many of us lie to ourselves and others about how much we eat. We don’t want to face the truth because doing so would mean change. And change isn’t easy.

What I can say overall is, I’m not happy and if this were a graded assignment I’d get a 55% for half-ass effort. Seriously, I failed. However, I’m going to take what I learned from the week and carry it forward. I know I want to be healthier and fit but I have to keep reminding myself of that when the next sugar craving strikes. And again, I appreciate keeping this blog to help me along the way. Sneak peek, into this week- it’s going better!

Before I wrap up, I also want to mention that I could have listed out a bunch of excuses why this week didn’t work out for me- vacation, moving, the stress of starting school again, not having food due to the move. Okay, well now I just did list them but the point is they’re all explanations and not excuses. I chose to eat what I did and that’s that. See you all next week!

Yours Truly, JennyXO

Here’s a few more of my photos from the trip- no family posted.

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Hi, Lovelies. My current weight

Ah, day two of blogging.

I want to start out by saying, I’m already a little disenchanted. I blogged for the first time when I was a teenager- mostly accounts of my troubled teen years and sappy poems. Nevertheless, blogging was about sharing experiences and ideas.

So far, in my late twenties now, half of what I’ve seen is “clickbait” type material. Ugh.

Anyhoo, on with the show. Today, my starting weight is:

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139lbs. My goal is to be 125ish, or more importantly, toned, slim and healthy. I didn’t have the backbone to post my starting photos on here, but I’ve got them for future use.

So, what’s my plan? How am I going to achieve Wonder Woman’s physique, you ask? Pretty boring but drum roll please…diet and exercise! Yep, you heard it here first folks the best way to lose weight isn’t very fancy. But all jokes aside, I currently am a member of planet fitness so my goal is to run 3x a week at the gym, 25 minutes each, with my heart rate maintained above 160bpm. This can account for cardiovascular adaptations along the way to make sure I’m continuing to push myself. Of course, there will be a 5 minute warm up and cool down. I will also do resistance training for major muscle groups 3x a week, which I estimate will take 20-25 minutes daily.

These exercise numbers put me beyond the weekly exercise amount recommended by the American Heart Association (not that I believe they are the end-all-be-all of good information, which may come up in a later post!)

My diet will be mostly WFPB or Whole Foods Plant Based. So, that would be fruits and veg (of course!), grains, beans, nuts and seeds. Limited or no dairy, meat, oil, highly refined and processed foods. Yum, sounds…delicious. But seriously, I’ve been following  a similar regimen to this for over 6 months now. Prior to that I’d been vegetarian for 5 years and part-time vegan for 1 year. My problem is I cheat too much! If you read my last blog post, you would’ve seen the large image of my half-eaten candy bar. Well, I went back for more later. There you have it.  I just love to cheat on my wholesome and healthy diet and I can’t convince myself to stop. The rest of that same day I ate homemade lentil and vegetable soup; banana, peanut butter and oat balls; watermelon; and a smoothie bowl. Oh, and lots of coffee and water.

So, my dream is that keeping and updating this blog on my exercise regimen, diet and weight(loss) weekly or maybe bi-weekly will hold me accountable. It may even inspire some of you! And honestly, I want to do this not just to be skinny, which is definitely a goal (let’s be honest here), but to live up to what I believe in. I believe in health, exercise, eating food that’s medicine for your body and not poison. As Hippocrates once said, “let food by the medicine, and medicine by thy food.” I have a passion for health; a near obsession with collecting information about healthy eating habits from binge watching Netflix documentaries like Forks Over Knives, to constantly perusing recipe apps/websites/books and following my favorite food YouTubers like FullyRawKristina and Caitlin Shoemaker. My future job is in medicine; a type of medicine that is based on the importance of movement and exercise. There’s also just a part of me that wants to see if it’s all worth it- or was I happier with my daily candy bar.

Can I be the super hero of health that I want to be? Can I inspire others or am I all talk and no walk?

Only time will tell…

Yours Truly, JennyXO

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