I Feel Good – Da-Na-Na-Na

I felt really good today. It’s funny how when something amazing happens (for me, it was my half mile run), you can’t help but smile for days after and be in a good mood. Today I was EXTRA helpful at work and just in a good mood altogether. And then, I worked out at the gym after work – but let me be clear. I did strength training, which is why I was not outside enjoying this beautiful weather.

Minnesotans, can you believe this weather? It is just so amazing. I bet there are studies that show depression rate falls here once spring hits.

So, speaking of good news! I have an amazing giveaway!

Hungry Girl’s new cookbook, Hungry Girl 1-2-3 came out this week! So, I bought one copy for myself, of course AND, a copy for one of my faithful readers! There are THREE ways to enter:

  1. Comment and tell me how this cookbook will help you stay on your healthy journey.
  2. Comment and tell me what your FAVORITE Hungry Girl recipe is. I love her and know you do, too.
  3. Tweet this: “Check out the awesome giveaway at the blog of @cindyelizabeth!  You can win Hungry Girl’s new cookbook! http://bit.ly/cN0Lp8 ” and then comment with the link to your tweet.

This giveaway is open until Sunday at 7pm CST and I will name the winner on Monday. It is only open to people in United State and Canada.

I’m really excited about this giveaway and I hope you are, too!

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On Milestones:

Okay, so this woman. This woman right below the text here, she had no idea she had it in her to….

RUN HALF A MILE WITHOUT STOPPING OR WANTING TO DIE.

Seriously, ya’ll. I didn’t. I was at the gym this evening and I though to myself, “I am going to run for 5 minutes without stopping.” And it was only about 50 seconds past 5 minutes that I reached my half mile mark. It felt SO amazing. I wanted to keep going, but I knew if I couldn’t make it to a mile that I would just focus on what I didn’t do the whole night, so I stopped after my half mile.

I just started smiling. And smiling. I was walking out the gym with the biggest smile on my face. I know that half a mile is not a huge accomplishment to many people. But I have never been a runner, was the girl who usually opted to WALK the mile in grade school, high school and even in college. So the fact that this here fatty, got on the treadmill and RAN for half a mile and didn’t stop or pause for anything, is amazing.

I cried on the way home from the gym. It just felt so amazing. This is what I needed today. It will keep me going.

So, my lovely readers: what are you proud of yourself for today?

Walk it Off

In the spirit of keeping a healthy outlook as spring and summer approaches, Alexa, Ann and myself are putting together a walking group for folks in the Twin Cities! How exciting is that? So, you should probably promise yourself that just TWICE a month you will get off your booty and come walk with us! The schedule is as follows:

May 2: Como Lake, St. Paul 1.5 Miles
May 16: Centennial Lakes Park, Edina 1.43 Miles
June 6: Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis 2.5 Miles
June 20: Shops at Arbor Lakes Man Made Lake (I need to get exact name) X2, Maple Grove 2.0 Miles
July 11: Lake Calhoun, Minneapolis 3.1 Miles
July 18: Lake Nokomis, Minneapolis, 3.5 Miles
Aug 1: Como Lake X2, St. Paul, 3.0 Miles
Aug 15: Lake Harriet, Minneapolis 2.8 Miles
Aug 29: Lake Calhoun, Minneapolis 3.1 Miles

This is a great way to get up and moving that is easy. Who doesn’t love to walk? Especially around a lake! It is so beautiful in the summer in the lovely Twin Cities.

Our plan is that if there is a possibility of rain, we won’t let it spoil our walking fun – we will simply walk – (no wallets allowed!) inside at The Mall of America.

AND! On top of that (how could there possibly be more awesomeness?) we will be planning a cookout for everyone at the end of the summer. So, check back for details and feel free to post this schedule on your own blog to get more people involved!

Check back at my blog every Thursday for details on where to meet for the upcoming walk.

So, get out your walking shoes and spread the word.

Bowling For Kids’ Sake – Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities

I know my last post had nothing to do with my weight loss journey, and neither will this one, so hang tight, folks.

As I stated in my last post, I am currently raising money for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities. And I will say again that this is something I have been involved in for the last the last two years. Big Brothers Big Sisters is an organization I am really passionate about because it involves helping the children right here in the Twin Cities.

The cost of matching just one child with one mentor is $1,300. This year, I would love to say that I raised enough money to match one child with a mentor. The beauty of these connections is that it isn’t just a one-time thing. I have known several people who stay with the same mentor for years. We are helping connect these children with a mentor and friend for life.

As of right now I have raised $190 dollars. So, I have a LONG way to go. But I don’t have much time to raise the money as the event is on April 10. The event is called Bowling For Kids’ Sake. There are teams across my company that are forming and raising money for help and then we have a “healthy” bowling competition on April 10 to celebrate with Big Brothers Big Sisters.

I want to have reached half my goal by next Sunday, which would be $650. I however, cannot do this alone and I know everyone has a huge heart and hope you all will help me reach my goal. And to say THANKS, I am putting forth a challenge:

IF I reach $650 by NOON on Sunday March 21, I will be offering up the following to the  winners of the drawing. There will be ONE winner:

  • Happy Hour, paid for by me. This can be coffee, or anything you want. I just say happy hour because it is fun.
  • A 3-hour session with your very own “merry-maid”, the wonderful Sarah Shoulak. Who wouldn’t want someone to come CLEAN for them for 3 whole hours? I know I would! A huge thanks to her for stepping forward to help out! Also, as a disclaimer: No, she will not wear a maid costume. Just sayin’. So don’t get any crazy ideas.

In order to qualify:

  • This is for folks in the Twin Cities only – I won’t be able to travel long distances!
  • Go to my donation page and make a donation of any size.
  • Come to this blog post and leave me a comment letting me know you donated. I will use Random dot Org for the drawing, so you’ll need a number in my comments section.
  • Spread the word! As I said, I can’t reach my goal of $1,300 alone, so I need your help.

You have no idea how much it will mean to me if I reach my goal. I am really excited to know I will be able to help out at least ONE child to connect with someone who will change their life.

Supporting Non-Profits

So, there are two fundraisers I have done every year since I started working at my current company. One is the American Heart Association’s Heart Walk and the other, which I am starting fundraising for today is for the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities.

This particular organization is very near and dear to me because it is all about children who struggle or who generally have less than most people. I truly believe that if these children have mentors, we can make a difference. We should be doing all we can to give these children what they deserve. Children here, and all over the WORLD deserve to have all the opportunities possible.

You may not know this, but it cost $1,300 to match just ONE child with a mentor.  So all the proceeds that I raise will go directly to Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities to help continue to create meaningful matches for the children right here in the Twin Cities who need someone to look up to during these important formative years of their lives.

Researchers found that after 18 months of spending time with their Bigs, the Little Brothers and Little Sisters were:

  • 46% less likely to begin using illegal drugs
  • 27% less likely to begin using alcohol
  • 52% less likely to skip school
  • 37% less likely to skip a class
  • more confident of their performance in schoolwork
  • one-third less likely to hit someone
  • getting along better with their families

So, JOIN ME by giving a donating to my Bowling For Kid’s Sake Fundraiser in order to help the Big Brothers Big Sisters continue to match great mentors with the children who need these mentors in their lives.

I will run this 5K.

Last summer, I attempted the Minneapolis Aquatenniel 5K. It did not go well. I did not train and really thought I was going to die and ended up walking most of it. But. I finished!

Today, Jen put forth the challenge to do the Challenge Obesity 5K in April. I think I can do it.

Tonight I went to the gym to begin my Couch Potato to 5K Training. It was good that I suddenly felt motivated because I just haven’t been feeling the gym. And you know what, ladies and gentlemen (do I have male readers?) – I LOVED IT. Check out how thrilled I was after my first go:

I am SO ready to take on this first challenge. This is exactly what I needed.

Off-topic, kind of.

So, I went and saw four apartments today. Apartment hunting is very overwhelming. I’m a bit nervous because I have zero renting history (thank you living on campus and then camping out with mom & dad post-college.) I believe my credit score should be okay, and I don’t want to check it on my own because I heard that each time you check it, it brings your score down. So. It is just the waiting game now! In any case, I put an application in for an apartment in Burnsville. REALLY excited.

I was just thinking about how great this is going to be for my journey here. My father LOVES ice cream, as do I, but it doesn’t mean we need to have it in our house ALL THE TIME. Same with greasy chips, cookies and the list goes on. I try really hard not to eat that stuff, but when I am starving, it’s right there, calling my name and sometimes, it’s wearing sexy lingerie. Okay, not true, but you all know exactly what I mean.

That being said, it will be great to have my new place filled with delicious goodness and be able to have an entire ‘fridge full of delicious and healthy treats. It will be great! And there is an exercise facility onsite, which will be great. I have a gym membership, but it will be nice to know I can just run across the way and go workout, too.

Oh, and I promise to post pictures of my lovely new place once I am moved in and…have stuff. I have lots of shopping to do!

Oh, and I had about FIVE Cuties today. I think the citrus has officially made me sick to my stomach.