Our Quest to change our lives began in Feb. 2010 and we lost 224 lbs. This is the story of our continuing Journey through the ups and downs of maintenance.
(For the fullest effect, begin at the beginning in Feb. 2010 using our Blog Archive on sidebar)

Saturday, March 31, 2012

It was a BLOWOUT!!

If you had happened to be at our Regional Women's Church Basketball game last night, you would have seen an amazing team of women play flawlessly... and get a TON of turnovers and end with a score of 41 - 18.  However, it would NOT have been OUR team...

WE GOT OUR TUSHIES KICKED BIGTIME!!!

It was after they won the tip off and strolled down for a quick layup that I was first to bring the ball down for my team.  As I was looking for an open team mate, the apposing team stole the ball from me and ran down for another layup.  At that moment, I was psyched out!  Any thoughts that I was somewhat of a formidable player left me completely at that moment.

It didn't take long for me to not even want to bring the ball down because I was intimidated!  Dang... these gals were good!  They were faster than us, seemed to score with every throw, and kept us from passing as they scored MOSTLY from stealing the ball from us!  I didn't score a single point!  I can't count the turnovers... but my daughter seemed to get a lot of them on the videos she took.  Hmmmm.  It hurts to watch those videos!  This team we played were all young girls in their early 20's and most likely all played on their HS if not college teams!  It really wasn't a good match up.  We are a good team in our own way!

We decided to consider LAST WEEKS game as our TRUE finale!  That's when I was on my game and scored a record 16 points!  THAT'S the game I want to DEFINE ME!!  The fact that we even went to regionals and were playing teams from different cities is way cool!

I did earn my first FOUL of the whole season!  Yay me!! 


We were served some HUMBLE PIE!  Or should I say HUMBLE FROZEN YOGURT... as that is where we went to reminisce our amazing basketball season.


OVERALL - it's been AWESOME to play and I hope I can KEEP PLAYING with these gals even tho the season is over. :)

Today, I knew I need to do a "long run" for my 1/2 marathon training.  Last night I did get a pretty wicked leg cramp so I was wary about going out today.  But ya know when it comes to running or exercise - you can't THINK about it too much - you just gotta DO IT!  If you think too much, you may just convince yourself NOT to do it.

So out I went on this WINDY day.  Our basketball hoop had been blown over even!  I knew just a  minute into the run that it was going to be a hard run.  Part of the time the wind was pushing me from behind and that was fine, but when I turned to come back - the wind was right against me and I was surprised how strong it was.  I was wearing a cap that was on pretty tight but if I put my head all the way up - it would blow my hat right off.  So I ran while looking almost straight down.  My pace was barely a walk but with a bounce as I was trying to run!

I thought of my friend, Joy, and her last comment on my blog where she called me "Doer of hard things".  Those words gave me strength... Thanks Joy!  I ran just over 6 miles!  And I was pretty sore!  I hope I can get back up to my 7.4 mile run... but that was like a miracle!  Miracles take a little longer but they happen!! :)


SOOO.... my new plan is to REIGN IN my eating MORE!  I've been having too much frozen yogurt lately and it's stopping NOW.  I am deciding right now that I will not be indulging in ANY candy or chocolate for the Easter Season.

NO CANDY FOR EASTER!!

Anyone else wanna join me on this challenge?  Either don't buy it, or only get it for the kids... and avoid it yourself!  Who needs that sugar and crap?  Easter's not even about all that anyway!!  Whether you celebrate Easter or not, surely you see all the candy in the stores and so this is a challenge to not give in to any easter candy!!  Let's do it.  Let's keep it healthy.

Get those celery sticks and cut up the yummy red peppers!  Pop those sweet grape tomatoes, or nibble on a few nuts and low fat cheese.  Your body will thank you!

And that is all for today, my friends!  Sending my love to all my readers!!
Life is GOOD
xoXoxoXOO ~Margene

Friday, March 30, 2012

It's TONIGHT

Tonight is our BIG GAME.  Women's Church Basketball!!  I am already feeling anxious butterflies.  Probably because I want to do really well and I really want our team to WIN.  If we win, we play our next game right after!

And if we win the 2nd game, we play a 3rd game right after!  Crazy!  I will need to bring my energy drink.  Good thing I did a 3 mile run yesterday and not today - I'm trying to save my energy!

My hubs and at least some of my kids will come to watch.  This is just so fun.  What a dream to be able to do this after so many years.  We had two practices this week and it was fun!  We practiced our zone defense and had some small scrimmages.

Wish me luck!!!

I thought I'd post some of my eats lately.  I've taken pics and now I'm finally getting around to posting them for those who like food ideas.  Nothing fancy but yummy for me!  These are some of my maintenance lean and greens! :)

Costco Fish and sauteed yellow squash ~ Roast pork, carrots and salad (on my OR trip)

 Two Morningstar Veggie Patties w/ sauted red peppers & mushrooms ~ Rotisserie chicken w/ sauteed zucchini & mushrooms
Fish w/ various veggies & low fat ranch dip ~ Fish with sauteed red cabbage

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

What FEAR can do

My niece posted this on Facebook and it really made me think:

Fear is selfish. It's so tragic how fear destroys the ones who nourish it in their hearts and souls. Then they let their fears feed on their relationships. All blanketed by a delusional white flag of victimization and martyrdom hoping to avoid accountability and escape the pain of personal power in their own lives; desperately attempting to secure sympathy, safety and love for themselves.


I can see myself a lot in this quote and have tried to see where I am letting fear guide my thoughts and behaviors at times more than taking my own personal power over my life!

That first line about fear being selfish is so true.  There is nothing uplifting to another person when you live in fear.  Not only that, but your fears drain the people around you as they try to help your fears.  And it turns you into a victim and deny's you of your own personal power.

I am tired of living in fear.  Fear of LOSING something or someone.  Fear of being FORGOTTEN.  Fear of gaining my weight back.  Fear Stinks!

I no longer want to "escape the pain of personal power".

Lately, I've been struggling with something that brings me either a lot of joy or a lot of anguish.  I've been on the more anguishing side of this dilemma.  In all my thoughts and analyzing, I have come to the conclusion that however it plays out - it will be painful for me.  There is no way to escape.

But wait.  I have personal power.  That often comes with pain but IN THE LONG RUN - (aka in God's view) it is better for us.  There is JOY.  God wants us to feel joy!

I'm so tired of feeling helpless.  I am tired of begin afraid and allowing myself to feel like a victim.  I have power!  I can do all things through Christ!  I am NOT a victim!

During family scripture study the other day, we were reading in the Book of Mormon, and in 2nd Nephi 26:13 it reads:  "And that he manifesteth himself unto all those who believe in him, by the power of the Holy Ghost; yea, unto every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, working mighty miracles, signs, and wonders, among the children of men according to their faith."

The part that stuck out to me and pierced me while we read was those LAST 4 WORD.  "according to their faith" - I know this is true - but I realized that that is what I was lacking in my own current dilemma... Faith!  Faith in myself, and Faith in my Savior, and Faith in what I believe to be true.  God can only help me according to MY FAITH.  If I am doubting, I am not giving Him the power in my life to work miracles!  And Hasn't the Lord ALREADY given me miracles?  Hasn't He already proven Himself?  My Life is a miracle!  I have a new life.  How can my faith dwindle so quickly?

It helped refocus me... AWAY from FEAR.  Because we cannot have FEAR and FAITH at the same time!  If we want to eradicate fear from our lives, then we work on building our faith, our belief in what is really true!  That's where I'm at today.

So I'm back to running here in Utah.  I'm trying to add in some sprinting during my runs to help me build up my pace.  Right now, I've got a slow and steady pace.


And playing basketball.  The hubs and I got an outside basketball hoop which is AWESOME to have!  AND - our church women's team is playing at REGIONAL now.  We won our first game last friday 52-18.  It was so fun!  Afterwards, Brent asked me how many points I thought I scored.  I'm not a big scorer as my skill is more on defense, but I knew I scored some so I guess 6 points.  Then he told me I scored 16 points!  BOOYA!  He said I'm good at assists and that there were people around him commenting on my ball handling.  Wow, positive things said about me!  It was an awesome feeling!
I am 3rd from the left in pink - Awesome team of ladies!!

My one year of High School basketball was spent in total self-concious anxiety and wanting to quit the whole season as I didn't seem to blend in with the team or have any friends on the team.  I never played after my freshman year.  So NOW I am making up for it and just having fun.  Feels good to get beyond that horrible first year of HS basketball.  Now I love it and I'm finally making it a better experience!   Only took me 30 years!

This Friday is our next game, and if we win - we play again right after - and right after if we win that.  This next team we play I hear will be harder so I am feeling a bit of anxiety but it's also so fun to even be playing!  I'm glad I am playing and showing my kids that it's fun to be active.  I don't recall my mom doing any sports... she was always too tired.  Hoping to change that trend in my family.

Life is GOOD!  
Hang in there my friends who are struggling 
and work on building your FAITH and not your FEAR. 
 xoXoxoX ~Margene

Monday, March 19, 2012

Back from the Northwest

Hi Friends!

We just got back this late afternoon from our 10 day gal trip to Oregon / Seattle with me and my daughters.  
It was a fabulous trip that included a women's beach retreat to the Oregon Coast, Seattle trip, tickets to "Wicked",  time with friends, time with family, women's game night, teen parties, basketball with my old Oregon gals, visiting new cousins and old friends, and more.
Got matching corny hats and wore some matching tops in Seattle!

I did manage to run 3 different times - including in the rain out at the coast!
Left is BEFORE the run - Right is AFTER our 2.3 mile run at the coast (ups & downs) in the pouring rain!

One COOL thing was finding a GREEN basketball at the store, I just had to get.  I was in the mood from seeing "WICKED" which was fabulous!  Now I have a green and PINK basketball.  And I did bring my ball back with me on the plane.  The pilot asked us which one was the ball player, and he seemed surprised that it was me and not one of my girls!  I like surprising people.

  
I found me a ball! - Boarding the plane today with my ball!

My peeps from Oregon totally wasted me on the court.  It was like non-stop sprinting back and forth on that full court, and their passes that were incredible.

I did splurge a bit with my eating and it got me into trouble the first couple nights.  I had two slices of pizza and the next morning a cinnamon roll.  Well, my body was not used to that high carb food and sugar and by the afternoon I was sick and had cramps and gas.  NOT good on vacation.  It's like going from high octane fuel to crap fuel and it makes your motor sputter.  This is good for me to recognize.  I feel SO MUCH BETTER on veggies and lean meats.  

It was nice to come home to my man and boys, though and now it's back to the old grindstone!   Back to getting my running back into high gear and back to our basketball tournament this weekend.

I have had some very neat experiences in sharing my "I can do hard things" rocks to many of my family and friends.  Some of them are really going through extremely hard times and it meant a lot to them.  I had one to give to JOY - but we kept missing each other :(  There were several friends and family I missed as well.  And yes, Kimberlynn... you are DEF someone I pray for :)  So much to blog about, but gotta go for now.  

Take care, my friends and remember that LIFE IS GOOD!!  

xoxOXo ~Margene

Thursday, March 8, 2012

DOING HARD THINGS!

Tomorrow morning I fly out to Oreogn... but I wanted to post really quick tonight about an amazing experience today.  I went out for my run and decided to go up the mountain again.  I was thinking about my friends and family in Oregon and how I wished I had something to bring for them... something I made or bought to surprise them.  I had nothing.

Then I got to the top of the paved pathway up the mountain and saw all these rocks.  So I randomly picked up several rocks here and there and put them in my jacket pocket as I ran.  I decided to take a rock as a symbol for DOING HARD THINGS and I dedicated my run to my family and friends.  

So during my run, I thought about how some of my loved ones are really struggling and friends who have severe trials.  Dedicating my run to them changed the run altogether.  I prayed for all my friends and family and blogger friends and really wanted the Lord to bless their lives and give each of them courage and strength to do hard things.  To be able to run and play basketball, to me it's a miracle.  The Lord can work miracles in our lives!

I ran so long and I knew it would be a record for me.  Towards the end, my knees started really hurting.  Especially my right knee which was the side of my jacket that all these rocks were in.  I wondered if it was wise to keep running when I was in quite a bit of pain.  But I couldn't stop running.  Not when I felt I had such an important purpose to my run.  I tried hard not to focus on the pain.  It was down the last stretch to my house and I probably looked like was limp running... but I felt good and happy.

I thought I was smiling more - but I think my pain was showing thru!
My pocket with 19 rocks that I ran carrying.

When I made it home, I saw that I had run for 1 hour and 57 minutes and for 7.4 miles!  That blew me away!  That's 1.3 more miles than my last run!  


Now, as I get everything together for my trip and put the sayings on these rocks... it all sounds like a corny idea.  But for me it is sincere and felt so meaningful when I was running.  Running is an emotional and spiritual thing for me.  I can't wait to see my friends and family in Oregon - my first time back since we moved last July - and to be with my girls!


My goal is to eat smaller portioned meals, but I will allow myself some frozen yogurt.  I've got healthy snacks packed and I hope NOT to indulge in high calorie/ high sugar foods.  And I hope to be able to go running (if it's not raining the whole time) every few days.  Wish me luck!  Boy, am I sore right now:)

Life is good!!!
~Margene

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

What DEFINES You?

I started This month last Thursday with a one hour run.  Sweet!    

But then I didn’t run the whole weekend.  I’m supposed to do my “long runs” on Saturdays.  However, Saturday was my women’s basketball game.  This is the last game I am in town for since I will be out of town for the tournament this friday.  We ended up playing ourselves again for a scrimmage 4 on 4.  My daughter was with me again and for some reason that day, I had my GAME ON!  I scored more than I ever had and had some great steals and layups.  It felt SO GOOD.  I  love playing... I’m so grateful that I can play! 
I have been on plan with my eating all last week and feeling good about my food choices.  Yup.  Lots of water. Doing good.  Then Sunday came and we were invited to a family members house to celebrate a birthday.  I found myself eating rolls with honeybutter - which was not on my plan.  Then... the cake and ice cream came out and I was going to not have any when the hubs decided he wanted some so I let myself have some with him.  Yum.  But dang, I wanted to be on plan!  So..... I’m not going to beat myself up or feel like I blew it.
Because - one decision of weakness 
DOES NOT DEFINE ME!!
I enjoyed the cake and my family.  It’s all good.  (This is progress for me because I have gone into quite the discouraging self-anger in the past when I’ve eaten things off plan.)
I have had my downs and things that I struggle with.  I am trying NOT to focus on them as I don’t want to give any more power and energy to the negative in my life or negative things I feel.  I’ve been trying to be patient in how I interpret things and to allow a few days for the Lord to enlighten my mind and help me see things as they really are.  To not jump to a negative conclusion or take to heart things that allow me to feel hurt.  Letting things go... Choosing to see the positive... Assuming the absolute best in others and myself.  I am a work in progress!
Yesterday morning - I headed out for my run.


God gave me the BLUEST SKY and CLEANEST AIR and as I ran I felt the STRENGTH in my LIMBS and LIFE WAS GOOD.  I ran up the side of the mountain again for that incredible view of the valley.  My heart was so full of gratitude that morning and I LOVED my time to myself and thinking, talking with God, enjoying my tunes, etc.  Before I knew it, an hour had gone by!  I still felt great.  So I kept running!
As I was getting close to my home and running down my street - it felt amazing and surreal to have run for so long.  I thought about how going through the hard times I have - has blessed me with MORE GRATITUDE for what I do have:
I reflected on many of my life’s struggles where the answers came later on - even years and years later.  And since I have been forced to wait for those blessings - they have became more cherished.  I can say that for my children (took us several years to have children), my husband (who I waited for for 2 years while he served a church mission), and my friends (who I prayed for years to find).
So now I am running down my street, in a body I haven’t had since junior high school.  A body I can run in, breath in, enjoy my life in.  I lived in a prison for so long and now I am running free.  
If I had not been in a prison - would I cherish what I have now?  If I had all these blessings right when I first wanted them, would they mean as much to me now?
I can’t imagine that they would.  These challenges have shaped me and endeared me to LIFE.  Life, my family, my friends are all MORE DEAR to me and MORE TREASURED than I ever imagined.



I reached my house and saw that I had run for 1 HOUR 35 Minutes for a total of 
SIX MILES!  
YOWSA!!  New Margene Best!  

Now, I will let THIS good accomplishment DEFINE ME!  
I can do hard things.  
And so can YOU!!

What are YOU going to let DEFINE YOU?
Life is so good.  I hope you find a way to enjoy and find the beauty in YOUR life!
Three Days and my girls and I are ON A PLANE to OREGON!!!  WAHOOOOOOOO!!
XoxOXO ~ Margene


(PS - This is Mango... he is not as impressed!)