My Weight Loss Journey – Starting over (Postpartum)

I will never forget the first time I went shopping for some work pants a while after giving birth to my daughter. At the time I have been using my maternity clothes, trying to hold off buying new clothes, thinking I will lose the weight (soon in my mind). I realized later on that I needed variety.  This was the first time I felt confused in my body. I still felt like I was in the same body before I got pregnant.

I learned the hard way how untrue that was. It was the first time I didn’t know where to start with in sizes as an adult and the last time I had this type of problem was in my childhood which obviously was not under the same circumstances and could wear any baggy t-shirt to school, not like a corporate job where I had to dress business casual everyday. I had to spend a really long time and a lot of energy to figure out my correct pant size was and this put me in a bout of depression. For a while I did not feel like myself and felt down. As trivial as it sounds, we women care a lot about our appearance.

So in trying to figure it out, I was entering fitting room after fitting room and could never find anything that felt and looked flattering. I also had not wanted to reward myself with new clothes that I felt I would potentially wear temporarily.

Then one summer, I  went on vacation to Virginia Beach with my family and just felt so tired from walking and riding the bike that I wasn’t enjoying it as much as I wanted to. It was still enjoyable but I felt like it would have been more enjoyable had I had more energy and stamina. This desire to run in circles with my daughter on top of my clothing dilemma inspired me to start a weight loss journey.

I initially started with the 10,000 steps a day and I was counting mentally and just kept guessing which I’m sure looking back I probably overestimated how much I actually walked. At the time, I didn’t lose anything but then again, at this time I wasn’t watching what I ate.

Then one day a person I respect very much just told me to incorporate calisthenics and I had no idea what that was so I looked it up. All I thought was that looks hard. I couldn’t even do half of one push up at the time. Then what started off as something gradual working out twice per week for 20 minutes became progressive and now I work out at least 4 times a week for 45 minutes to an hour. These were the first YouTube channels that I felt would help me:

Fitness Marshall
Club Fitz
Dance with Jessica
Popsugar Fitness

When it came to my diet, I saw an interview with Dr. Oz on the Breakfast Club which is a radio station I frequently listen to. In the interview I remember Dr. Oz using visuals to inform on the effects of sodium and sugar intake. I managed to remember the picture of what was going on but am unable to remember the date and time.

I didn’t realize how much sugar and sodium can affect our bodies so negatively. There is apparently a recommended daily consumption limit for these things according to the Health.gov website. So I learned to maintain sugar intake between 25-30 grams and not exceed that amount daily. That’s for ONE day, so that means throughout my entire day, what I eat does not exceed my sugar intake. However, I realized how one can EASILY go through that. Like with a can of coke – it’s exceeding the daily limit and having two would’ve doubled that intake. I found that most processed foods contain so many grams of sugar as well. After so much research of sugar intake, I also found that being used to sugar consumption can also lead to Leptin Resistance(Shapiro, A., Mu, W., Roncal, C., Cheng, K.-Y., Johnson, R.J., & Scarpace, P.J. (2008).) in which the brain no longer “hears” the message to stop eating.

I had that problem for so long then with the above knowledge, I took control of my life back and have never felt more energy. People ask me constantly what I have done to lose weight and it’s really the only true and same message we all know but refuse to believe. It’s all blood, sweat, and tears in eating healthy and exercising often. There’s no secret nor magic pill that will take you there. It’s all pure hard work and most people often only see the result and don’t really see anyone do what it took to get there. Weight loss I found requires consistency, discipline, and a “can-do” attitude.

Maybe you had a different experience? If so, leave comments below! Let me know what YOU did to help motivate you, get you started, or what you did to lose/gain the weight you did!
Love,

Martha

References:

https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/healthieryou/html/chapter8.html

http://sugarscience.ucsf.edu/the-growing-concern-of-overconsumption/#.Wo22z_6ouCo

Shapiro, A., Mu, W., Roncal, C., Cheng, K.-Y., Johnson, R.J., & Scarpace, P.J. (2008). Fructose-induced leptin resistance exacerbates weight gain in response to subsequent high-fat feeding. American Journal of Physiology. Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology , 295(5), R1370–1375. doi:10.1152/ajpregu.00195.2008

http://www.doctoroz.com/article/theres-just-no-sugarcoating-news

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Kids & Health

At first when your kid is still brand new (by a few months) and is starting just to eat, parents usually feed their kids either prepackaged veggies/fruits or homemade veggies/fruits because of time restrictions. Well, that is what we did.

At a very early point in my daughter’s life we introduced veggies and fruits. Somehow though, in our case, vegetables weren’t as consistent on her plate as she was getting older. Since recently my change of diet has been consistent, I have tried to make sure veggies are on the plate, even for her.

Her father was particularly vocal about his dislike for vegetables, particularly broccoli during her very early age. I had to advise him to use code names for this but too late. My daughter, being the observant child that she is, also ended up hating broccoli.

She really HATED it.

If it was green, it was nasty.

But today, I FINALLY got her to eat broccoli. I told her initially that what I was feeding her wasn’t broccoli (just so that she won’t have a biased opinion) but when she had that surprised look on her face I could tell that she LOVED it and I loved that she loved it. We celebrated to the moon and back.

I almost thought I didn’t have anything much to write about today because oddly enough I spent most of it sulking in my own bad luck.

It started off with not being able to do my eyebrows right, to my computer problems RIGHT before I left work, and right before picking up shoes for my daughter. I was going through it today!

However, a video I watched today made me think of how I was feeling and what I was expressing with my vibrations. I was just moody and unhappy but when I caught myself and smiled a little bit more, my mood changed eventually and the small things didn’t bother me anymore. I just felt great the rest of the day. Why were the small bothering me in the first place? My own thoughts.

When you control your thoughts by bringing yourself back to the present with your vibrations and let the bad stuff go, you will be at a better place mentally and spiritually. The rest will fall in line too.

Just know even the bad days have blessings too because when my daughter ate her vegetables and helped me bring the groceries inside, I knew at that moment that nothing else could change the happiness I felt from feeling like today was a great day.

Love,

Martha

Sautéed Shrimp & Zucchinni

Hi guys, welcome back! So I know I did promise a Shrimp & Zucchini recipe for you guys to try. It’s super quick and easy not to mention deeeeelicious! I came up with this one day because Kroger’s was selling a bag of shrimp for like $13 dollars. I was like whaattt *grabs bag*. Lately we have been on this zucchini craving lately so I went and bought a few to cut up and sauté. The day came to make a quick dinner and it only took about 10-15 minutes to make! Like I said, so quick and easy especially for people who want to meal plan or just eat something quick but filling.

So first, grab a nice bag of shrimp, I would recommend the big ones, I grabbed a 21/25 count, because they get smaller once they cook a little in the pan (as I’ve discovered on my own).

This can serve around 3-4 and does not require much prepping.

Make sure to have:

  • 1 TBSP Butter
  • 1 TBSP Olive oil
  • 1 medium uncooked zucchini (cut into 1/4 inch slices)
  • 1/2 TBS Garlic powder
  • 1/2 TBS Parsley
  • 1/4 TSP Black pepper
  • 1/2 TSP Salt
  • 1/2 Cup grape tomatoes (optional)
  • 1.5 cups of large-size pealed shrimp

What I did first was cut up the zucchini first into 1/4 inch slices and put it on the side.

Then I placed the olive oil in the pan and waited a few minutes to get hot. How I can tell if the pan is hot sometimes is I splash a little water and if it crackles, it’s pretty good on heat.

Then I place the zucchini slices in the pan and cook until it’s golden on both sides by mixing and flipping the zucchinis for around 5 minutes, during this time I sprinkle over the black pepper, salt, and garlic powder. Once it’s cooked I place it on the side.

Next, I put butter in my pan, assuming it’s still on and hot (using a check method first) I go ahead and add my shrimp to the pan and start moving it around to get the shrimp cooked on all sides. During this time I am adding my parsley in between and making sure all of the shrimp is lightly covered (add more if needed). The shrimp is cooked when you no longer see the greys and translucent of the shrimp. It should be a reddish, pink color.

I add my tomatoes at the end and let it cook with the shrimp by tossing and moving it around in the pan until the tomatoes are softened. Then I put my zucchini back in the pan to get hot and voila I’m done!

Now you can serve and what would be recommended is 1 and 1/4 cups to serve or however you decide you would like to eat it. Make sure you keep in mind portion control! Small meat, more veggies, and small complex carbs.

Unfortunately my husband loves the white rice and pasta so I had to make him white rice. I stuck with my shrimp and veggies though to keep it disciplined.

It is a HARD road to be disciplined but believe me, it will totally pay off in the long run and I will keep posting more healthy meal ideas for you health lovers and weight watchers.

Until next time.

Love,

Martha

Positive Changes

So last post I made had regarded some chicken, which I have yet to make so yet to create a recipe for but I will post a few more healthy snack recipes for any of you healthy food eaters out there!

Nutrition pretty much is 80% of your health whereas working out counts to 20%, so everything you consume matters so that your workout 20% can matter even more 🙂

I earlier this month or late last month have already signed up to be an Herbalife distributor and I must say that my first month has been extremely eventful and emotional to say the least. I have felt all the emotions from fear to excitement to goal setting.

The one question that people may be asking is why go into Herbalife? Well to be frank, at first it wasn’t even something I considered doing until I completed my first 30 days but I fell in love with the way Herbalife works.

Now, I can’t say I’m a total pro at remembering prices and products but for the most part I understand the ways in which its meant to help you lose weight. I have pretty much over the years of my life learned about nutrition on my own and with Dr. Oz’s help as well as scholarly articles found online. Mind you, these articles as well as people I follow provide credible information.

So it was a combination of my own knowledge attained over the years and new knowledge of Herbalife that I decided to allow my brain to join forces. I have a sister as well that when I was younger helped her lose weight to fit into a sweet sixteen dress. It was one of the most gratifying and accomplishing feelings I felt.

When bumping into Herbalife and observing my mentors and coaches, I found myself to be fascinated by the process and by the way they help whether it’s by meal planning, workouts, and group chat accountability. It’s amazing to see how many people come together for a common purpose which is to help people be health and stay fit.

Either which way, I discovered a passion born in me that created a desire to do more and help people. I want to help people and I want to help my community. We are now part of a population where you can easily fit into the 1/3 or 2/3 statistics of obesity or being overweight.

If I can help just 1 person and make just 1 person happy with their results, it would not be in vain. I’ve never felt more excited and happy about finding a new path to follow and challenge myself.

It will be a hard and rough road to get through since I am new but I feel myself going to blossom into this amazing thing that vibrates a reach I couldn’t even imagine. That’s my ultimate goal but one step at a time, for right now 🙂

Love,
Martha

Healthy Choices Matter

I cannot stress enough how conscious one must be and how one must be in tune with their subconscious to remain in control of the things you eat every day! Some people say it’s calories and some say it has to do with carbohydrates.

People automatically assume any carbs, calories, or sugars is evil. On the contrary, these foods such as carbs, help with energy and maintaining some energy depending on the type of carb you consume. Calories, they are in anything that you consume, for example, an apple contains 95 calories. Sugars and sodium, they both play a part in your health. The one moment that changed me where I realized the true impact of sugars and sodium is through an interview with Dr. Oz. Both sodium and sugars is alright to take in moderation, the problem with our society and with processed food is that most of what you see in boxes of cookies, yogurts, etc. contain paramount amounts of sugars! Sodium is a little forgiving in the amount consumed but like carbs, sugars can convert into fat if you have too much of it and obviously may cause long term problems such as obesity, diabetes, heart problems, etc.

Keeping that in mind, however, you don’t need to stop your entire life and deprive yourself of such indulgences. Normally, so as to prevent myself from eating out or spending money and depending on the shake to maintain my nutrition, I just go home and drink a shake. However, today, the weather gave me a different plan.  Just a few moments ago my phone was buzzing with warnings of a flood watch. Clearly this was not the moment to try and go out to grab a shake, so I accepted my circumstances and went to the work cafeteria to eat.

There was a section near their grill section that stated “Italian Sauté” and I have seen similar stations during the week like “Stir Fry” etc. but every single time they give the option to grab a bunch of veggies and the option to select your choice of protein. So imagine it like a work Chipotle but you have to grab your own veggies.

So I threw in bell peppers, onion, broccoli, mushrooms, such a delectable combination of vegetables to have stir fried on a pan by cooks, then I ordered the chicken. So by the time it came to the pasta, I said just put in the pesto sauce and no pasta. So I was rewarded with a discounted meal by omitting the pasta. Amazing!

How life works in your favor when you wanna stay healthy! So I will recreate later tonight the vegetable stir fry with pesto sauce and post to my blog shortly after. I want you all to understand the amazingness of healthy food! People think you have to eat like a rabbit but the beauty of food is that you can modify to how you see fit, you can add more veggies, you can add spices, you can just love your food to it’s end and it will love you back! Food is like a relationship, you eat trash and that is what will enter your body and be of you but when you eat healthiful and colorful meals, your life will be just that, healthy and colorful!

You are amazing! You CAN do this! Anything is possible once you set your mind to it! You guys, I have done a million things in the book this being 207 pounds at 5’4″ when I gave birth to my daughter and by now I am extremely well versed in nutrition and what’s good for you and bad for you. Allow me to be your coach and give you results! I want you to be your BEST self and I know you do too!

Please bear with me while I concoct my veggie and chicken stir fry recipe but in the meantime, get yourself to my site and go nuts with the health movement and don’t hesitate to ask me questions if there are any:

marthandonis.goherbalife.com

With Love,

Martha

 

Protein Bites (No Bake)

Something I must say that has been one of the most amazing discoveries since starting Herbalife has been the protein bites. So simple and easy to make, there are plenty of recipes all over but I want to give you an amazing peanut butter bites recipe (PS. If you’re a person like me that doesn’t like to get anything under their fingernails, I’d recommend wearing food handling gloves):

1/2 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter

1/3 Cup Pure Honey

1 Cup Old-Fashioned Oats

2/3 Cup Shredded Coconut Flakes (Optional)

1/2 Cup Ground Golden Flaxseed

5 TBSP Mini Chocolate Chips

1 TSP of Vanilla Extract

First combine the oats, coconut, flax seed, and chocolate chips in a large bowl and just mix with your hands.

Then in another small bowl, add the honey and vanilla extract which can be mixed in with any spoon. Then pour that onto the dry ingredients.

Last put in the peanut butter and with your hands combine and just mix everything together until it gets super thick and less dry.

And voila! All you have to do i roll those up in your hands into a solid 1″ ball and place them in a container or cookie sheet and keep them in the fridge until consumption.

Love,

Martha