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-211 lbs + love = a WHOLE life!

The incredible gift of transformation — four years in.

ITE_Weight_Quote“Did you ever think in your whole life, you’d have a whole life?”

I will never forget the day I heard those words for the first time. I got choked up instantly. My eyes welled with tears and, I knew, for the first time since my transformation journey began that indeed this was the gift I gave myself when I decided to put myself and my health first.

A WHOLE life. Not a busy life. Not…a small life…a fake life… an empty life… But a full,  complete and whole life with me going into the arena 100% all-in, pursuing those things that matter most, even when they’re hard. (Brene Brown, I am Daring Greatly and you’d be proud.)

For me living a WHOLE life means living wholeheartedly, from a place of self-love and self-worth. It means going “all in” and opening myself up to it all — even and especially LOVE! True romantic love. The kind that once you get it for real, you realize you weren’t living a whole life before.

Yep. This is the gift — the greatest gift — I gave myself when I found the courage four years ago to push past my intense fear and go “all in” committing to my goal of putting ME in the center of my life and getting healthy so I’d be around for years and years. This was the beginning of learning to go for my big, hairy audacious goals and dreams — and it was the beginning of opening myself up to real, true romantic love and intimacy. Read more

From fear & dread to anticipation and love…of my mountain

The day I found my inner strength and became unstoppable.

Lori-obergmountainbootcamp2-bethprobstI’ve been reading past blogs, thinking and journaling about my personal transformation start four years ago this month. It seems that it was four years ago this week that I conquered Oberg Mountain for the third (of four times) during weight-loss boot camp, and in the climb found an inner strength to push through immense pain to reach new heights.

In the process, I first found a new confidence that I can do anything I set my mind to. It was also this week that I fell in love with climbing mountains for cardio exercise. Go figure!

As I read through my daily blogs during my weight loss boot camp from November and December 2010, I see the internal transformation taking hold inside of me. Read more

Nutrition: Do you know the basics?

FruitsTake this cool quiz and find out!

When I first started my weight-loss transformation four years ago, I didn’t know that fruit was a carbohydrate. It’s true. I was surprised when I learned this in a nutrition lecture during weight-loss boot camp and I’m a bit embarrassed to admit it here.

We took a field trip to the grocery store and learned about the marketing tricks on food labels and how to look more closely at the macro-nutrient counts (carbohydrates, fats, protein). I now read labels on everything, looking for hidden sugars and processed “stuff” that can slow metabolism, cause spikes in blood sugar or be just plain unhealthy.

What we eat, not just how much, does matter.

This was a key takeaway for me in the weight-loss boot camp and it’s why I don’t subscribe alone to the “calories in, calories out” method of weight loss. And with all of the jargon on food labels today — terms like vegan, all natural, fat free, low fat, organic — it’s tough to know what’s really healthy unless we analyze those labels and/or get smart about our nutrition facts. Read more

Climbing mountains…getting strong

She climbed until she saw…and saw…and saw…

Lorileif-oberg-bootcamp-bethprobstI love the quote, “She Climbed Until She Saw” by Compendium. And so it became the lori&leif-on-mountaintitle of this blog documenting my transformation journey over the last four years. A journey to health, happiness and personal growth.

It also became the metaphor for my transformation — for the internal work I needed to do to learn to love and accept myself  as enough. And for the physical mountains I would climb as part of my journey to weight loss.

It was in weight-loss boot camp that I climbed my very first mountain…and survived! I’ve now been climbing mountains for fitness and for pleasure every since. And I always look forward to both the physical challenge, and the mental one.

In November of 2010, as I readied for weight-loss boot camp, my dear friend Jean sent me this quote, which I’ve found myself reflecting on these past couple of days. I want to share it here again with you all because it is so representative of my journey and the struggles we all face going for our big, hairy, audacious goals — you know, the one(s) that have alluded you and that you say you’ll tackle someday. Here’s the poem — one of my favs.

Courageous Girl: Four years ago I was scared to death…

…and I had the courage to begin my transformation journey.

Lori_BeforeFour years ago today, I found myself at a live-in, weight-loss boot camp at my beloved resort on Lake Superior — beginning a journey that would change the trajectory of my life forever.

I had no idea at the time just how much this one decision would matter, or what it meant in the grand scheme of my life. Nor did I have a clue how much courage I would have to muster. There simply was no way to prepare my mind and body for what I was about to put it through. Nor was there a way to ease my intense fear.

And so, with a pit in my stomach the size of California, I leapt off the cliff. I adopted a “just do it” mentality and trusted that I would survive the boot camp and be stronger for it. I trusted that my business would be okay in the hands of others for those two weeks and that my clients would understand. And, I trusted my mentor and inspiration, O’Neal Hampton, when he said “We’ve got this. You can be happy.” Read more

Six tips for self-care during the holidays

Lori-bigpantsIt’s official. The 2014 holiday season is upon us.

I’m celebrating Thanksgiving in Maine this year and we’re expecting a “Noreaster” later today/tonight so people are rushing to the grocery store and preparing for the onslaught of the holiday, expecting to be “snowed in.” Nothing like a little added stress for those who need to travel. (Please be safe.)

While the holidays are intended for families and friends to come together and celebrate, they can be stressful. The commercialism surrounding the holiday season and the busyness and pressure of it all, not to mention our expectations, can often cause more stress than pleasure.

For many, the act of spending time with family and friends causes stress in and of itself. For others, loneliness, the absence or loss of family causes sadness and/or stress during the holidays.

So how do we take care of ourselves through it all? Read more

Pursuing our goals without attaching worthiness

eb65892d1c35299e535c7eafdd14718dThis morning I read a blog on Positively Positive titled How to pursue goals without setting yourself up for disappointment. It caught my attention because I was about to log my results for the third week of our “In the Equation 2014 Challenge” as unsuccessful. I did not hit my goals this week. In fact, I struggled…a lot.

What’s interesting about this, is that I am NOT feeling unsuccessful or like a failure — meaning I have not attached my overall worthiness to the goal. Rather, I had a tough week. Some out of town travel, a girls weekend and some emotional upset made it extra tricky and I did not meet my goals this week. There is only one thing to do now, “restart!”

I am human. And the truth is, I’ve been struggling quite a bit lately to stay on track with my “In the Equation lifestyle goals” as I work through some personal emotional stress at a level that has challenged me more than anything in the last four years. But, I know the way. I’m not making excuses. And, after reading this blog this morning, I realize that my worthiness is not wrapped up in it.

That’s a a huge victory. And it was not always the case for me. So it makes me smile. Read more

The 90% Rule

Progress not perfection. 90% = success!

perfectionI woke up this last Friday morning after two days of real struggle working toward my “In the Equation Challenge goal” and remembered: I am not perfect! I am fantastic, strong, smart, courageous, beautiful, passionate, diligent, determined…and perfectly imperfect at the same time. And I LOVE that about me! I am not perfect. Thank God.

One of my favorite quotes related to perfectionism comes from Brene Brown in her book, The Gifts of Imperfection. ““Perfectionism is self destructive simply because there’s no such thing as perfect. Perfection is an unattainable goal.” Here, here. I finally get it and embrace it!

Brene goes on to describe the difference between healthy striving and perfectionism. “Healthy striving is self-focused, how can I improve and grow? Perfectionism worries about what other people will think.” According to Brene’s research, perfectionism is not about excellence or healthy striving. It’s a way of thinking and being that says, “If I look perfect, do it perfect, love perfect, work perfect, I can avoid or minimize shame in my life.”

In other words, perfectionism is the ultimate fear that we might fail, and/or the word is going to see us for who we really area and we won’t measure up. Yes, perfectionism is fear. I get that because I’m a recovering perfectionist. I spent most of my adult life trying to be perfect and beating myself up when I was not. It kept me small, and stuck. On the sidelines and NOT in the arena for far too much of my life.

These past four years as I’ve personally transformed both inside and out, I’ve worked to embrace “progress not perfection.” I’ve learned the difference between healthy striving, learning and growing as a person vs. the impossible standard of perfection. And, most importantly I’ve learned self-love and how to offer self-compassion when I slip or fall or fail. I truly believe, I am enough. And that has made all the difference.

Which brings to me to why this blog — the”In Your Equation Challenge” and my revelation of this past week. Read more

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