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Taking a well-deserved vacation. About 230 pounds here. 8/17/09



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Hi, I'm Jen! I know my title is cliche, but last year I made some major progress mentally and emotionally, and I feel like a new person. So with that, here are my major 2013 goals:

1. Get below 200 pounds. This one has been on my list since 1993. I'm the closest I've ever been at the start of a new year. This could be the year!

2. Get a good review at my new job.

3. Get control of my finances. With my schedule, I've been slacking in this area. I need to regain control of my money!

4. Get an A in each of my two remaining MBA classes. I want to finish strong!

5. Improve my marriage. I already have a good marriage, but I want to have a great marriage! I love myself now, so I can put more focus on loving my husband.

6. Organize my house. The clutter drives me batty! Time to clear it out. Like my emotional baggage, the physical baggage must disappear.

Friends, it took me many years to figure out what was behind my inability to stay on track. Last year I decided to let it all out and told you all my "dirty little secrets." And you know what? It helped. I was able to acknowledge those things, accept them, and move on. So thank you.

My wish for you this year is healthy and happiness beyond your wildest dreams. Keep pushing, let go of your fears. Love yourself and you can do anything.


Here's my original story:
I have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, which is a metabolic disorder than can also cause insulin-related issues. I take lots of medication to keep it all under control, but nothing ever seemed to help me lose the weight I gained when I was a teenager, even though I was and have remained very active.

Shortly after deciding I had to change my life, I began an innovative program at a metabolic clinic. I saw an endocrinologist, a dietician, an exercise physiologist, and a psychotherapist. With their help, I learned tips and techniques that worked for me. I joined SparkPeople in March 2009 on my dietician's recommendation. I was excited to get started, and quickly found that SP was a great fit for me.

Before long, I had lost over 35 pounds and went from being morbidly obese to just obese. At that time, the clinic set me free to take care of myself (but I still see the dietician). I continued to lose weight, nearly reaching 50 pounds lost before life interfered and I found myself overworked and injured. Eventually, work cleared up and I had my surgery.

I am making progress in my recovery, and have had to relearn a lot of things, including how to walk. I've decided I just have to take it one step at a time, and relish the things I can do instead of wishing for different circumstances. I will heal and get back to what I love (triathlons), but I won't get anywhere if I try to rush it. is a lot like weight loss. Take it slow and be consistent, and you will achieve your desired results. The journey is just as exciting as the destination.

Care to join me on the path to a new life?

March 08 (Wanted to keep this on record so I don't forget where I came from, mentally): I am determined to do everything in my power to get to the point where I do not need this team of people monitoring my every move! I am an avid exerciser, but struggle with the food. I am sure I will find loads of support in that area here on SparkPeople. It is time for a change.

December 09: Over the past year, I have had ups and downs, gotten stuck, and had to remotivate myself time and time again. But I have stuck with it, not giving up, never to return to all of my old habits (some die hard, of course, but I'm still plugging away!). And at the end of the day, on the 1-year anniversary of my commitment to myself, I am officially 39 pounds lighter. I once thought that I needed to lose over 2 pounds a week to be happy with my weight loss. Now I have realized that any loss is a good loss. It doesn't really matter how long it takes me to reach my goal. All that matters is that I continue striving to reach it each and every day.

December 10: This year was very challenging for me. On one hand, I recovered from my hip surgery with flying colors and ended up stronger than ever! On the other hand, I went back to school for my Master's degree and my world became chaotic. I only met one of my 5 2010 goals (shopping for regular-size clothes...woo hoo!), so 2011 will be a catch-up year for me. Time to figure out how to do all the things I need to do to be successful. I can do this!!

January 2012: In May 2010, I had hip surgery to repair some torn cartilage, a bone spur, and a too-tight tendon. I recovered very well from that surgery, and got down to my lowest weight since 2004. But then my knee started acting up, and I couldn't keep up with my exercise program. I had to give up a lot of activity, and had never learned how to control my eating. Nearly all the weight I'd lost came creeping back on. I had knee surgery in August 2011. I'm recovering, but slowly, and am in nearly constant pain. All the fitness I had achieved is gone. The thought of completing a mile-long walk, much less a sprint triathlon, is daunting now, where it used to be exhilarating. I'm in a bad place, but I'm determined to pull myself out of it. It's time to get back to basics.

September 2012: This past year I focused on getting back to basics, and I am happy to report that I'm down 30 pounds since January. I also got back into racing, which is something I love to do. For the first time in my life, I got emotional crossing the finish line - tears of joy at having overcome so many setbacks. My energy is back, my motivation is back, and I know that I have the right attitude to see this through to my goals.

2012 goals:
1. Run a half marathon in September (Done! 3:29)
2. Finish a sprint tri in under 2 hrs in August (Done! 1:59:59!!!)
3. Finish the Tough Mudder in September (Done!!!!!!)
4. Get below 200 pounds.

2011 goals: didn't reach any, so carried them over to 2012.

2010 goals:
1. Get below 200 pounds.
2. Finish a sprint triathlon in under 2 hours.
3. Improve my 5k speed (14:16 min/mile in 2009).
4. Shop in regular sizes - no more plus-size stores! (Met: 9/24/10)
5. Improve my US Bank building climb time (16:25 in 2009).

2009 goals:
1. Get below 260 pounds. I have been stuck here for two years. [Goal met: 4/6/09]
2. Be able to do 10 pull-ups.
3. Run a 5k without stopping
4. Finish both my triathlons this year in under 2 hours. [Finished one in 2:04]
5. Be a size 7 or 9.

Member Since: 3/11/2009

Fitness Minutes: 29,389

My Goals:

Weight-loss rewards:
· 1st 5% lost (261 lbs): workout pants [Goal met: March 09]
· Reach 250 pounds: closet shopping! [Goal met: May 09]
· 2nd 5% lost (247 lbs): work slacks [Goal met: 5/26/09]
· 3rd 5% lost (236 lbs): mineral makeup
· 4th 5% lost (224 lbs): Spa Day [Goal met: 9/28/10]
· 5th 5% lost (213bs): 2 days off work for closet shopping
· 6th 5% lost (202 lbs): New faceful of makeup
· Reach 199 lbs: weekend getaway!
· 7th 5% lost (192 lbs): New dress
· 8th 5% lost (182 lbs): New workout gear
· 9th 5% lost (173 lbs):
I don't think I'll need anything for this one - when I get here, I will no longer be obese. That's enough reward for me! But maybe I'll go shopping anyway.

My Program:
I hired a personal trainer earlier this year, and even though I reached my original goal thanks to him, I can't let him go. So I hired him again for one year - he's going to push me to reach my goals, whether I like it or not. Ha!

I see my trainer 3 times a week and we do crazy workouts. I also do DVDs at home, swim, bike, run, and play kickball.

I have lots of food allergies and intolerances, which makes eating very difficult. But over the past 3 years, I have figured out a lot of ways around it, and have even learned to love some healthy foods. I no longer crave junk, and I cut back severely on the sweets. I think I really can do this for the rest of my life.

Personal Information:
My name is Jen, I'm 39, and live near Milwaukee, WI. I've been married for 12 years - wow! No kids, but that's ok...we have cats, fish, a chinchilla, and endless hobbies to keep us occupied.

Other Information:
Proud member of these awesome teams:

Challenges for Sparkers with Lots to Lose!
10 day Challenges
QuickFire Challenges

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    Jen! So good to hear from you... I have missed you!

    How have things been going with your job? Did you ever do that trip out here to Minnesota? We need to catch up!

    Things have been going good here. Kids keep me busy like always. But I have also been working hard on myself as well. Trying to focus on my diet and making sure I am staying within range. Working on improving my performance with sports (running) and weight lifting. Things are paying off as long as I stay dedicated and focused. It has been hard though.

    If you want to get reconnected with the Diamonds challenge, let me know. It was really nice to hear from you though so I hope we can chat some more soon!

    863 days ago
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    You are the recipient of the Beautiful Person Award!!

    Once you've been given this award, you have to paste it on the page of 8 People who deserve it. If you receive more than 3, you know you're really beautiful! If you break the chain, nothing will happen, but it's always good to know someone thinks you're beautiful inside and out!

    Again, Congratulations Beautiful!

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    967 days ago
    By the way.... where is the blog telling all of us about your climbing experience??? I want to hear all about it!

    1154 days ago
    emoticon for commenting on my blog Jen!

    I just have been having one of those moments... where I want to be done and finally be in maintenance. But slow and steady is the way and there is no quick fix. I just need to keep reminding myself that.

    Hope you are having a great week!
    1154 days ago
    Thank you Jen! I hope 2014 has been kind to you so far.
    1165 days ago
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