In Mom's Heels

A shoe obsessed mom's Weight Watchers Journey with Celiac Disease

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I am Pretty…Strong

Wow. Last week’s cheeky post garnered a lot of responses on my Facebook link. Thank you to all who commented. Thank you all for the advice, and workout dates we have set up.

I DO notice the fit of my clothes is different. Today I am wearing a work-branded golfing-type vest. When purchased last summer it was snug so I never bothered to use the zipper. Now, it’s loose. My pants? They keep falling down. I’ve measured – another 2″ off my waist!

The weight is slow to come off. I know. Today I weighed in and was down 0.4 lbs for a total of 16.8 lbs. The difference this time around from the last time I was on Weight Watchers? One is I was unaware of my Celiac Disease and two, I work out like mad now where as before all I did was run. With not knowing about my disease, my body wasn’t retaining the nutrients it needed. I was able to lose the weight easily, but I wasn’t healthy. Now, my body has repaired the damage and I retain the nutrients (good and bad), so the weight loss is slower. Second, muscle weighs more than fat, I know. This is why this time, I am also tracking measurements. I see me getting leaner, even if it’s not lighter.

Some days I have to force myself to go to the gym. Some days I’m dying to get there. I love following a couple of strong women on Instagram and seeing the exercises they post; and imitating them in class (the ladies in Boot Camp don’t like me much though).  I have a confession; I love lifting!! I have become obsessed with working my upper body (I actually have a pretty strong lower body) and core (even though I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, Strongly dislike core exercises).  I love feeling the struggle as I add more weight and push against the resistance until I just can’t do it any more. What a high!!

So, as I plan out my week of kids activities (hockey & soccer) and exercises for myself, what will you be doing?




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Weight Watchers; Take 2

Welcome Back!  I know, I’m sorry I’ve been gone for so long. I wanted to share my news with you that I am back in the WW program and back to my exercising.

To start, if you remember, I was successful on weight watchers a few years ago. I lost 70 lbs in 2 years, only to spend the next 3 putting 60 back on. Last week, I took the Groupon I bought (months ago) and re-joined weight watchers after a 3-year hiatus. My starting weight this time 245.2. The good news; it’s 10.5 lbs less than when I started WW in Sept 2011. Not all bad.

So, Week 1. I was down 4.3 lbs this week. When I stopped using the WW plan 3 years ago it was the”PointsPlus” system. Since December 2015, it’s Smart Points. I’ve started at 38 daily, (no lower than 30, 26 on PP), 42 weekly (49 on PP) and now I have to earn 35 activity points per week. Week one, I earned 83 activity points. I didn’t use all my weeklies, but I struggled with fuelling after all my dailies were gone. I was used to the old system where I earned activity and could eat activity points. The plus side, the WW app and my FitBit app are synced so I don’t have to track in 2 places manually.

Needless to say, I went back to my Wednesday meeting tonight and spoke to the leader about the activity points and re-fuelling. She advised me to use my weeklies to re-fuel, or to use any activity points over 21 (the first 21 are “well being” points) or when I have had an intense session and need to re-fuel. Makes sense.

Lets see how this week goes, huh?

What’s my Goal? 5% or 12.3 lbs by Christmas. 4 down, 8 to go!

Have a great week.



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Year in Review…2015

Hello. It’s me. I was wondering if after all these months you’d like to read, about me. Snicker…thanks Adele for letting me “borrow” you’re opening lines…

So, it’s been a while. Looking back to my last post, I did eventually create that home gym; although I didn’t fix the basement wall…I knew it will take me forever to do that and it was just another excuse standing in my way. My friend K became a certified personal trainer and came over to give me training tips. I admit, I did it for quite a few months and then gave up.

Work has been going very well, I am enjoying my job immensely. I am a stand alone HR person with multiple locations. I’ve headed some projects and travelled to Montreal a few times to work on committees. I am really looking forward to what the new year will bring!

I got really depressed this summer. The moods became quite dark. I reached out to my family doctor who put me back on the meds and sent me for counselling…too bad the appointment wasn’t for another 6 months. In the meantime, I kept to the promise I made to myself and didn’t partake in any of the obstacle races that I had become so fond of, nor did I return to kickboxing. Instead, I chose to walk. I downloaded Map My Walk by Under Armour. My youngest had soccer practices on Tuesdays & Thursdays and when I took her to those, I walked. In April, (when I remembered to turn the app on) I logged 21km, May 5km, June 14.5km , July 15.5km, August 13.5km, and September 7 km. My longest walk was 9.4 km in 1.5 hours, that was taking it super slow at the end to cool down. I lost my poor little Fitbit Zip somewhere on the subway or at the hospital. Lucky for me, my wonderful family gave me a new Fitbit Charge HR for Christmas this year.

Hubby participated in the Grand Slam Charity Baseball Tourney supporting the Toronto East General Hospital with his company, we met baseball greats like Jose Canseco, Robbie Alomar, David Justice, Jessie Barfield, Mookie Wilson….so many more. It was an amazing and humbling experience.

I had another MRI and follow-up in September with my specialist and they have said the “spots” have not grown and are Focal Nodular Hyperplasia’s and I can move to MRI’s in 3 years. I have responded very well to the Gluten Free diet as the blood work shows zero antibodies.

Mom was told this year her Multiple Myeloma is no longer smoldering (“inactive” in easy-speak). She started treatments and, after a couple of bumps, is responding very well to the treatments. This is not a curable cancer, but a very manageable one. While the wait times with her specialist are LONG (one was about 7 hours), this is one of the foremost specialists in this type of cancer, we’ll wait (as frustrating as it is).

On Canada Day, we got to see Walk Off the Earth at a free concert in Brampton, ON. In September, I took A to her very first concert ever, Ed Sheeran. I went to my very first Madonna concert ever in October. I was on the floor, 6 chairs from the stage. What an experience.

We also got caught up in Toronto Blue Jays fever. My husband and I attended Game 5 of the ALDS – WOW, what a game. Of course, it was disappointing that we lost in the ALCS, but there is always next year.

My kids are well into their sports. E is still playing her rep soccer in winter and summer and A is playing girls hockey in winter and co-ed in summer. She had a few teammates join her this summer for co-ed hockey.

We went on a cruise, the four of us, in December. We boarded the Norwegian Escape (OMG – this ship was AWESOME!!) on December 5. We ported in St. Thomas (US Virgin Islands), Tortola (British Virgin Islands) and Nassau (Bahamas). Our underwater camera broke in St. Thomas while snorkelling and the GoPro managed to capture only my snorkel masked face and not the 1.5 hours snorkel…there’s always next year. We cruise from the Norwegian Getaway in December.

Christmas was hurried as we scrambled to shop after returning from the cruise. It was unseasonably warm here in Southern Ontario, everyone was commenting how it didn’t feel like Christmas. Most of my house wasn’t decorated to its usual extent. I even took down a tree – my hubby would tell you that the tree in the basement hasn’t been taken down in 4 years and I don’t turn it on in the off-season and call it a ficus and since we weren’t hosting Christmas this year, we didn’t need it.

My awesome company closes its doors a noon on Christmas Eve and gives us all a holiday until the new year. I don’t have to take vacation and I get paid for it. I am VERY grateful that I get to work where I do. I’ve been with some horrible bosses and equally horrible companies (from my perspective, of course).

New Years was spent with new friends in our downtown listening to live music and watching the fireworks. Mom was in Alberta visiting my younger brother and his beautiful family.

Things learned this year, I don’t put myself first enough (if ever), I lack confidence, I am good at my profession, and I am done putting other people first when they don’t value me the same way.

My New Years Goals for 2016? To be Happy and put myself first. I will learn to be more confident and use the voice I have.

I wish all of you a very Happy New Year, filled with love and happiness that you all deserve.



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Happy New Year 2015

Today is the first blank page in a book filled with 365 blank pages. What will my story look like?

I’m not making new years resolutions…I’m going to continue with my weight loss and healthy lifestyle journey while trying to figure out this Celiac Disease thing in the most fabulous shoes I can afford to buy (without feeling guilty about it).

What will your story be?



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Post-Race and Training recap

I forgot to set a September goal. I managed to get in 26.9 km in September along with bodyweight exercises, but no real training. My shins and time I ran, but I persevered and kept on going. On September 30, I wanted to drop the kids off and go back to bed, but I didn’t. I looked at the clock and thought, I have 30 minutes, lets see where it can take me. It took me 3.33 km.

However, looking back at my August goal, perhaps 40 km was a little ambitious. Especially considering I fell at the York Region BadAss Dash in July and sprained my ankle. It was a good week before I could walk on it. I had tried to walk on my ankle many times too early because crutches were a pain. You would be proud to learn that even with the sprained ankle, I still got in my workouts. I used the Nike Training Club (NTC) App on my iPad to do the abs workout along with the Arnold S Double Split exercise as found in Muscle & Fitness magazine. I did the Chest/Back/Arms/Abs. I realized that there was nothing wrong with the rest of me – so why not work it out? So I did.

I did run 7.62km for the month of August. I went to the gym and did 4km on the treadmill and felt great. When I tried to do two trips around Chinguacousy Park with E, my ankle was on fire at about 1.5 km. I persevered and made it to 2.5 km before we ran up and down the hill twice taking us to 3.55 km. Since the ankle was hurting, I was doing exercises on the bowflex. I tried to pay attention to ankle exercises and used the resistance bands to do exercises for sprained ankles I found on Pinterest. This sprain was not as bad as some of mine have been in the past – but I think the combination of this sprain and ALL the others (trust me, there were many. I keep my own pair of crutches in the garage) has really weakend my ankle.

On the races, not only did I feel the extra weight, but I could also feel the lack of strength training. Especially at the a frame obstacle where you pulled yourself up and over the wall. I couldn’t get myself up! I had NO issues with this last year. Instead I took the 15 push-up-15 sit-up penalty. On that final BadAss Dash, I managed to do 20-25 push-ups for most of the penalties. I was sore the next day, but on race day – I rawked these! The push up challenges and squat challenges I was doing with K’s FitClub on Facebook were paying off.

I’ve been feeling pretty crap about myself lately. Someone made some comments that I allowed to get to me. My fault. Actually getting activity in has been a feat in itself. Yeah, I’m overweight. Yeah, I’ve put weight back on. Yeah, I am slower than a turtle in PB. I may not run as fast as others, I may not be as fit as others. I may not be where I want to be, but thankfully, I’m not where I used to be.  Here’s to setting new goals and winter training.



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July 2014 training recap

The North York BadAss Dash is August 2. Am I ready? As ready as I’ll ever be. I’ve been working on the endurance (cardio) because I know the strength is there. I need to start to focus strength. I know there will be obstacles where I have to pull myself up and over things either using rope or just climbing. With 30+ added pounds it’s gotten tougher – but I am my parents daughter – that means a fighter. I’m going to get the weight back off and be fit once again. I need to focus the strength on items such as completing the monkey bars (core & shoulders?), or hill climbing (stupid Blue Mountain Met Con Blue)…I’ll start to track again in Weight Watchers and try small goals – 5% is the first. No deadline, just a small goal for myself.

I was looking back over my NikePlus training app. In August 2012 I ran 39K. That was the second year of my weight watchers journey and when I was most successful. In June, I pledged to run 26K for the month of July. For my last post, I had done 2 runs totalling 10.03K. I did sleep in my running clothes once or twice to encourage myself to get out there first thing in the morning – and it worked! I knew by the time I made my last post I had 11 days to get in 16K. The very next morning I got in 4.68K. For the month of August, I pledge to hit 40K. That’s only 14K more and really, it’s 3 more 5K’s. It’s totally do-able. I DID IT!! I ran 26.97KM this month!!

I have decided to ditch the “gym” membership and find something that works for me, my work schedule and family schedule. I am a full-time working Mom. I read some blogs that say I need to just take the time for myself and let the family get used to it. I feel guilty doing this. My kids are only this age once. They have hockey and soccer – because ironically I force them to do activities – of their choice – to keep fit and eat right. Before I know it, they’ll be teens and no longer need me. The other side of the coin is, if I don’t take the time now, I may not here for them in the future. The joys of being a full-time working Mom/Wife. Whatever I decide to do, it needs to fit with me and be FUN so that I can be consistent and actually FOLLOW the plan. I have the P90X3; I didn’t find it fun and I died after 2 episodes. I did kickboxing for a full year twice a week with running and learned that I loved kickboxing. I should find a new kickboxing studio to challenge me the way the other one wasn’t able to in the end.

I follow @ruthievsdessert on Instagram and she contacted me the other day! She’s a BeachBody Coach and to be honest I haven’t really got a clue what that means, but like the true life-long-learner that I am; I am interested to hear more about her coaching program and the activities that she does and how she fits it into her life being a single mom. I thought I had it hard having DH around to help.

I welcome your thoughts and ideas on what I can do that’s fun to get strong and lose weight. In the meantime, here’s to 40K in August and atleast a few pounds down.




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July is almost over…

And I have not been doing well with the training. I did manage a couple of 5+ km runs, but I pledged to do 26K this month…I’ve done just over 10K. and yes, I’ve only done two runs…BUT…July isn’t over yet!

We hosted the 40th Birthday party for E’s hubby this past Saturday. The guest of honour and birthday boy was passed out drunk, asleep on my powder room floor by 10:30 pm. The guests had all gone home by 11:00 pm. My own DH spent most of the night asleep on the floor in the master bathroom. It was a rough day had by the boys. It wasn’t me on that side of the fence for once, and not because I wasn’t drinking because I was and doing shots with them…I just took it easy.

Sunday was the birthday party for my oldest – she will be 10 on Tuesday. it’s been a busy weekend. I’ve spent so much time getting the yard ready along with cleaning/dusting/vacuuming/mopping/scrubbing toilets for this weekend, I hope to have time to rest next weekend.

Last week was a hard week. It was the one year anniversary of my Dad’s passing. We’re past the one year mark. We’ve gotten through all the firsts. I spent time at his grave on July 16. It was very difficult. E popped by even though I told her not to and to go finish running her errand. That’s what “Sistets” are for.

The daycare lady is off this week and the little monsters will be looked after my their retired Grandma. I now have to actually get those runs in this week cause my hubby told her to come early so I could do them. Maybe I will hit that 26K goal after all. I just need a minimum of 3 days of 5+K’s….

Wish me Luck.


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Gluten Free Food and weight loss

It’s amazing the differences in people and the roles we play in our households. Usually my husband can’t shop without a list. On one occasion, he went with a list to the store, there were specific items on the list that were for me because they were Gluten Free.  The funny difference here, is that I never shop with a list. Yes, I may go up and down every aisle, but I know what I need from that aisle without having to look at a list.

However, the local Wal-Mart here decided to stop carrying Italpasta GF Pasta. WHAT? WHY? He scoured the aisles looking for GF pasta for me. Although Catelli now carries a line of GF pastas at a reasonable price. They also only seem to carry a select variety of Udi’s breads. Also, my lovely co-worker who has become a dear friend had me try tempeh with Black Bean Sauce.  All the Black Bean Sauces I found at Sobey’s contain wheat. Costco has a great selection of GF food – Quinoa, Pancake Mix, Glutino Products, Breton GF Crackers, etc.

I am struggling with a couple of things. First, Why do I have to go to 10 different stores to do one GF grocery shop?  Secondly, Why is GF food so bloody expensive? I mean really Glutino – $9.99 for a bag of GF Pretzels?? Or $5 for a small box of chocolate wafers? Is there GOLD in this shit? I said it before, eating whole, raw foods that came from nature that has been prepared by me is my only true way of guaranteeing something is Gluten Free. But I guess that’s why we North Americans are obese. We plow over our farmland to build new houses and McDonald’s is $4 for a happy meal and a salad costs $8 at the store. I guess there is an upside to having Celiac Disease after all. Atleast at Halloween there is an upside to Celiac for the Weight Watcher in me – no candy! I even turned down M&Ms…and you know I love M&Ms.

I have slowly recuperated from the back issues I faced these past couple weeks so I went to Triple Threat on Monday night. Even with the back pain i went to Step Class (I didn’t really like the instructor though) and only did what I could within my limitations. I would have gone to Body Sculpt and ABS last night, but it was my dear hubby’s b-day so I stayed home (and worked all night). Saturday I will venture to these two classes. We have been taking the girls public skating on Friday nights, but A is now in hockey and practice is every other Friday during public skate so last Friday I got her dressed and popped into the gym at the same rec centre for a quick workout.

My question is, how often should we let our bodies rest? Is there a set rule, on the 6th day we rest? Rest after strength training but not cardio? I NEED to get back to my WW tracking (I have added a couple of pounds since the series ended September 20), but more importantly I HAVE to get back to activity. I feel lazy and slobby and jiggly and tired. Feelings I don’t like to feel. I will train and complete the Brooklyn Half and Tough Mudder in 2014. This one is to prove to your Dad that I CAN do it.

Cheers, S.

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Wacky Wednesday and Thanksgiving

Last week I had to have a Bone Density Scan at the hospital. My Gastroenterologist requested this scan as I am at a high risk for osteoporosis with Celiac Disease (adding to the spots on my liver found in the MRI) – this just gets better, huh?

The scan is completely un-invasive. it took only a couple of minutes. However, when I arrived at the clinic I waited FOREVER for the elevator. I opted to take the stairs. It was only 7 flights, right? HOLY SHIT. I thought I was going to die. There were chairs at the top when you come out of the 7th floor stairwell where I sat, sweating and panting (and not for any good reasons) and started to panic that I would NEVER catch my breath again. I eventually caught enough breath to sign in for my appointment, but still sat there sweating and panting like I was in a bad porno. On the plus side, the technician weighed me and i was down 0.2 lbs! Woo Hoo!

If that horrifying episode taught me anything. It was that I HAVE to get back up off my duff and get back to exercising. I have been having issues with my back for the past three weeks which has sidelined me from exercising. I finally went to the doctor today who suggested to do what I wanted. Wait for the results of the scan before deciding on a treatment plan. However, I need to start physio immediately to get back onto my training plan. It’s important now that I have the Celiac diagnosis and am aware that I am high risk for osteoporosis that I need to keep up the exercise if I am to stave this off.

This past Monday was Thanksgiving here in Canada. It was our first without Dad. I spent most of the weekend crying but I managed to hold it together on Monday. I am most thankful for my wonderful Family and amazing Friends. Without their love and support I may not have survived this summer. I am thankful for having 36 years with my Dad. I am thankful for having a Dad (and Mom) that are always forthcoming in their affections for their children and grandchildren and great-grandchild. I am thankful for the wonderful memories my Dad made with me.  I hope everyone had a Dad like mine in their life (and I know personally there are people that thought of my father as theirs) or can aspire to be like him.

We took the kids to Chudleighs and I made Gluten Free Apple Crisp. It was YUMMY!!! The topping was a mix from the Great Canadian Superstore from PaneRiso Foods. I found it in the Natural Foods Aisle. I made a Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie for myself for Thanksgiving. I found a pie crust recipe online from The Baking Beauties and made it. In all fairness, I didn’t use the flour recipe the online version gave, I bought the Cloud 9 Gourmet GF Flour from Costco. I prepared the pumpkin filling per the directions on the can and added it to the online crust recipe and baked. As a slice, the pie was good. If you tasted just the crust (which in my opinion is usually the best part of any pie) it was like eating cardboard. Ick. Just add lots of Cool Whip – everything tastes better with Cool Whip. Better still. Just eat Cool Whip. My brother did tell me about his boss’ wife’s website Suzie’s Gluten Free Kitchen. Apparently my brother ordered GF stuffing for me but his boss forgot to bring it :(. Stuffing is the best part about Thanksgiving. I would sacrifice everything just for stuffing. Stuffing and Cool Whip.

Here’s to a great week!