Travel

Texas Car Camping Part 3

I’ve fallen in love… and not with my husband.

I have found a new love in car camping and hiking. The simplicity of the experience and freedom it allows me is everything I didn’t know I was missing.

I told you how I prepared for my trip in my post Solo Car Camping. I told you about the first night in my post Texas Car Camping and my second day in my post Texas Car Camping Part Two. Now I’ll detail my third and final day of my weekend away.

As the sun began to rise Saturday morning I was feeling all sorts of things.

  1. I felt a stiffness in my shoulder that I wasn’t sure if it came from sleeping on it wrong or if it was from climbing in and out of the cave the previous day.
  2. I felt the four blisters on my right foot and the one on my left from hiking 13 miles in new shoes.
  3. I felt excited to move on to Enchanted Rock State Nature Area where I would hike to the summit of a massive pink granite dome.
  4. I felt a little gross and dirty from not showering for a few days. Thank goodness for dry shampoo and baby wipes.
  5. I felt disappointed this would be my last day of my adventure and I would have to return to work on Monday.

All of these feelings energized me for the day ahead. I hit the road by 7:45am to drive the 1.25 hours to my destination. I arrived 30 minutes after their opening time of 8:30 to this sight: About 50 cars lined up on the side of the road trying to enter the park. I underestimated the number of people who would be interested in hiking and this fantastic natural location so early in the morning. Watching every car briefly stop to talk to the park rangers lined up at the entrance only to either continue on down the road or u-turn and head in the opposite direction, I finally got to the front of the line. They already reached their max capacity for the morning, but I was offered a voucher that guaranteed admittance at 1pm when they reopened.

With a little over 3 hours to kill, I fortunately had many options to occupy my time before I would be able to return to the park. I decided to travel the 17 miles to Fredericksburg, TX. What a fantastic town! This destination is known for its German immigrant culture mixed with Texas pride. There are tons of shops, restaurants, wineries and entertainment to keep you occupied for days! The town was bursting with activity and tourists participating in egg hunts, shopping and sight seeing since it was Easter weekend.

I’m not really much for large crowds or spending money so I did some quick research and found a nearby wildflower farm that was free to visit. Sign me up! Wildseed Farms was perfect! You can’t help but admire all the Texas Bluebonnets lining the roads as you travel through Texas, and to have a location with acres of them growing in on place was absolutely gorgeous. They have a shop, winery, an event venue, cafe, and of course the fields. If you’re in the area, you really need to make it a priority to stop.

As the time drew closer to 1pm, it was time to head back to Enchanted Rock.

It was worth the wait.

My intentions were to hike to the top of the dome and then complete a loop around the base of the mountain as well. You can see the trail map here. The climb to the top was tough, but doable. My shoes gripped the granite easily and even a simple tennis shoe would probably do the trick. The views were breathtaking. Nature truly is amazing.

My feet and blisters were not happy though. I laid down and smiled through the pain.

After basking in the sun at the top, I finally decided to make my descent, skipping the longer hike I had planned and headed home.

I don’t think I could have had a better time on this trip. Everything exceeded my expectations. I know there were a few people concerned for my safety, but not once did I feel unsafe. Cold? Yes. But never, unsafe. I really need to get that sleeping bag for next time.

Health

The Weighting Game

Pun intended. The weighting game-2

My second blog post was titled, How to Lose Weight. I recall being so proud of writing this post. I was told how brave I was for being so honest about my struggles with my weight throughout my life. I remember feeling almost smug at how I had it all figured out. I had dropped a pretty decent number of pounds and I was down to the lowest weight I had been in many years. I was pretty pleased with my progress.

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Looking fly-y-y-y

 

Fast forward 3 months. Well ten pounds crept back on, but no big deal. I knew I had the combination figured out on how to easily lose it again. I’d get right on that once we were settled into our new move to Florida.

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Not that noticeable, but ten-ish lbs heavier.

 

Fast forward 4 months. Well another ten pounds crept on, kinda starting to feel like a big deal, but all I needed to do was get back into my routine, follow the steps that made me successful before and I could drop the weight in no time. I’d get right on that once we were settled into our new move to Texas.

Houston
Black dress, hand on the hip does wonders to hide that I’m 20ish lbs heavier.

Fast forward 8 months. Sonofabitch. I’ve gained 30 pounds total since that super awesome, lowest weight ever circa summer ’16. It’s officially a big deal. Unfortunately, my half-assed attempts at working out a week here or there, and tracking my diet/nutrition on my ghetto-ass, generic, weightwatchers app isn’t cutting it.

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In case you didn’t know, the leaning pose is slimming. But alas, it doesn’t deceive the scale and I have some weight to lose.

While I fear of sounding like a broken record, shit just got real (I’ve said this before, and yet I continued to gain). Buuuuuuuuuuut, for real this time. Being more active and making good food choices are now my job. What does this look like for me? Allow me to break it down…. in a list!

  1. Weight watchers: my bootleg app isn’t going to cut it. I joined weight watchers again. I’ve peeked the new freestyle format, and I think I’m in looooooove! Even more than I was with the Smartpoints. Eggs are zero points. I could, for real, eat eggs for every meal.
  2. Water: Goal- 120 ounces a day. I’m going to be peeing so much, my coworkers will probably think I have an UTI.
  3. Morning Exercise: I’ve become a bit obsessed with Tone It Up. Each day there are daily moves to complete and I’ll throw in whatever videos pique my interest on their youtube channel. Katrina’s booty is serious booty goals.
  4. Evening Exercise: That’s right. I have two workouts scheduled. Why? Because instead of coming home from work and sitting on my NOT-Katrina-esque booty, why not do something more productive? So I’ll be going for a walk or jog/walk around my neighborhood. C25k is my app of choice.
  5. Rest Days/Cheat meals:
    • As far as rest days are concerned, I was given some great advice from a friend who doesn’t plan rest days. Instead she listens to her body, and if she’s exhausted, too sore or sick one day, she rests. Otherwise she rallies, gets her shit together and worksout. I like that idea. Maybe Wednesday is going to be a shit day and I’ll need to hold off on busting my rump to finish the Tone it Up Daily Moves. Or maybe I’ll have the energy and mindset to kick my own ass and take names everyday.
    • Cheat meals are my cryptonite. It never fails, if I even overindulge on one stinking meal, I can pretty much gurantee I won’t lose any weight that week. So I need to really be strategic with my nutrition and recognize that “cheat” meals are only cheating me and my health. If only brownies and pasta didn’t taste so good. I’ll figure it out. strategies for weightloss.png

I have my plan. I have my spreadsheets written out. And I look forward to dropping these pounds so I can post a super bitching before and after comparison again.

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Health

Winning at Weight Loss

I DID IT!! I had family visit and I still was able to lose weight! winning at weight loss pin.png

It can be so challenging to stay on track when you have family or friends visiting you. They’re on vacation, and whenever someone is on vacation, of course a favorite thing to do is eat!

I was so worried that with my mother in law being here this week, that we would go out to eat and I would make poor choices. I was so worried that I would stress eat, because I tend to get frazzled a bit with visitors. However, I can say my eating was on point, I did most of my workouts, and I am super pumped with how my week turned out!

  1. Eating Plan
    • Typically I make my menu for the week on Sunday, I was off track a bit with my MIL visiting, so I didn’t get to do it until Monday morning, followed by my grocery shopping to make the menu successful. I plan out every single meal. This is breakfast, lunch, dinner, 2 snacks and a dessert, every day.
    • This week, I’ll share my breakfasts, they’re always the same. I alternate oatmeal with fruit, or turkey bacon and scrambled eggs 6 days a week, and pancakes on Sunday.
      • I eat the Quaker brand weight control oatmeal, slice up some strawberries/bananas, or blueberries/bananas. IMG_8490
      • I pan fry Butterball brand turkey bacon, mix up one large egg with 1/2cup egg whites and scramble. Top with some ketchup and enjoy!IMG_8437
      • For pancakes I whip up 1 cup bisquick, 1 large egg, 1/2 cup almond milk, and 1 table spoon of vanilla. I portion out 7 pancakes on a griddle and top with about 4 ghiradelli dark chocolate chips. Flip, and when they’re done I drizzle on some sugar free syrup. Sundays are for pancakes. Sundays are for Pancakes-2.png
  2. Workout Regimen
    • C25K– Have you started it yet? You really need to download this free app. I completed week 2, and I am so thrilled with how my training is coming along.
      • I haven’t experienced any of the hip pain I was getting the last time I tried to pick up running again.
      • I love how it literally takes zero thought on my end. It tells me when to run, and when to walk.
      • I never, ever, ever, thought I would run for exercise. This app really makes it so easy and borderline enjoyable…. well, at least tolerable.
    • Yoga- I alternate yoga with C25K, 30 minutes, 3x/week
      • I have a couple youtube videos I’ve found that I like:
        • Tone it Up
        • Yoga with Kassandra
    • Large Muscle Groups- In the afternoon/evening I do 20/30 min of exercises focused on different muscle groups. I have workouts I follow through YouTube and Pinterest. I’ll share those another time.
      • Tuesday: Arms
      • Wednesday: Back
      • Thursday: Abs
      • Friday: Legs
  3. Restaurant Success
    • It’s so tough to eat healthy when you go out to eat. I wrote how you can eat out, and stay on track on the post When Weight Loss and Real Life Collide. I actually took my own advice this week!
      • I made our dining out part of my eating plan, so there weren’t any surprises, scoped out the menu prior to going, and had amazingly delicious, but still healthy food while dining out. Everybody wins!
  4. Water
    • I’ve been slacking a bit with my water intake. I haven’t been drinking sodas or alcohol instead, but I haven’t been drinking as much as my body needs.
    • This week I made sure to increase my water intake and it has really helped with my appetite. For two weeks I had the biggest appetite, and I was so pissed about it. Well now it makes sense. I wasn’t drinking enough water.
    • I try to get at least 120 ounces of water in.
  5. Weight Loss Update
    • My goal for this month is 3%/6.4lbs
    • Week one: 2.4 lb loss
    • Week two: 2 lb gain
    • Week three: 3 lb lossWeight Loss Transformation.png

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