Healthy Through The Holidays Week One- November 7-13

If you have not done so, be sure to LIKE the Healthy Through The Holidays Facebook page to join the contest.

I cannot tell you how excited I am about this contest.  Not just because my sponsors from the Bariatric Breakthrough Challenge conference series have donated awesome prizes, but because I am looking forward to us all doing this together and getting through the Holiday season without feeling like we are off of our programs and having gained a few pounds and feeling bad.

I want us all to wake up January 1 with a smile and feeling like there are no resolutions to be made, just a continuance of everything we have already been doing.  Each week there will be a blog to lay out that week’s instructions.  This is going to be fun and will not take up too much time.

I have had several people email me and say they are not weight loss surgery patients, but want to participate and try to get through the holidays without weight gain and you are all welcome!  I will try to tweak what we are doing to fit your lifestyle as well and healthy eating is healthy eating regardless of whether or not you have a body that has gone under the knife!

I am 150% committed to doing this with you all and so is Ben.  We are keeping the notebooks just like you.  The only difference is we cannot win!  I want the 2011 holiday season to be about feeling joy and feeling healthy and spending time with your family and participating in traditions for your particular holidays that make you feel good and feeling good is a big part of overall health.

For so many of us, we spent years trapped in the clutches of the disease of obesity and it takes more than just surgery and losing the weight to stay clear of the monster.  We also spent years beating ourselves up and thinking something was wrong with us because we couldn’t keep the weight off.  Those days are over.

This week will not feature a lot of heavy exercise or food challenges but is really focused on reflection and preparation!

We are going to spend the next 7 weeks realizing what strong and amazing people we are and just how much we deserve to start 2012 off HAPPY, JOYFUL, AND HEALTHY.

Are you ready?


For week one, I want to start by getting back to good habits and also by remembering how far we have come. I want each of you to get a before picture of yourselves and tape it or glue it to the first page of your notebooks.  Put the date and your before weight at the top of the page.  Here is mine.  Taken right before my surgery.  Nothing fancy, just a picture is all you need.

Often times, we will regain 10 or 15 pounds and all of a sudden we think we are failure and the tool is broken and we cannot call ourselves a success.  NOTHING could be farther from the truth.   For the next 7 weeks, EVERY TIME you get frustrated or feel bad about your journey, I want you to look at that picture and realize that every pound you have kept off since then is another pound closer to optimal health and be proud!

Remember that there is no end to this journey and we are all lifetime “works in progress”.

Now to get week one in gear- Every day this week, I want you to commit to doing two things for me.  This is really a preparation week.   At the top of the page, Write WEEK 1- and also write TAKE MY VITAMINS!!!!  Each day, I want you to write down in your notebook At LEAST one thing you did that day that you couldn’t or wouldn’t do before surgery.

That is another initiative this week.  We all need to remember to take our vitamins so if it is written on the top of your notebook page for the week, then that should help!  Here is how mine looks:

Each day, after you write your one thing down, you have to also post it to the contest wall.  You get one point for each day you do this.  That is all you have to do to be in the contest.  Just post your one thing you did that day that you could not do before weight loss surgery or for those who have lost weight in other ways, before you lost some weight and got healthier! If you are at the beginning of your journey, and have not lost any weight yet, I want you to write down one small thing you want to do each day once you lose some of your weight.

You can get SEVEN points/entries this week!

Now, for those with a little bit more time who want to take it a step further and really make this a life-changing journey for the next 7 weeks and do a little bit more, I challenge you to do this as well:

On another page, I want you to think about each time this week that you are tempted to make a bad food choice.  Write down what emotions you were feeling at the time or what circumstances led to the bad choice.  If we know our triggers and what leads us astray, it can help us avoid those situations in the future.  I would love to see us all recognize those things BEFORE we get into the thick of the holiday season so that we can all be prepared!

If you have those moments, feel free to post them as a comment on this blog and we can all help each other through those kinds of events with our own personal tips.  You never know what someone else has tried that may work for you!  For everyone who does this extra exercise and posts their experiences on the blog, you get up to THREE extra entries for the week.

SO let’s get started and remember you can earn 7 entries this week from your posts on the contest page, and 3 if you do the extra activity!



About Erin Akey

I am a formerly morbidly obese wife, mother, Christian, author, speaker, water fitness instructor, nutritionist, anti-obesity advocate, and Emerald Ambassador with Plexus Worldwide. I am passionate about helping people fight the disease of obesity and also preventing and addressing obesity in children. I believe we have so many amazing tools available to treat this disease and we all need to take advantage of the ones we feel are right for us. I am also passionate about women taking the time to care for their needs. We live in a world where so many of us spend all of our time taking care of others that we neglect ourselves. I am all about making God the center of everything and letting His will take control of our lives and watching the beautiful blessings come from that release of power! Live, Laugh, and LOVE every day! Be grateful and be humble and watch the world around you change!
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20 Responses to Healthy Through The Holidays Week One- November 7-13

  1. Kay Wiman says:

    I sacked up all the leftover candy and got it out of the house. Sent it to the grandkids.

  2. Lisa says:

    2 questions: number 1) What if we don’t have a before picture? I hated photos and would NOT pose for them.

    2) will be out of town for a night and might have difficulties posting pics.. not taking a computer with me and still not great with smartphone.. any suggestions.

  3. Joia Jones says:

    Soo…does this actually start tomorrow, November 7th? We’re going Monday-Sunday?

  4. LeAnn says:

    Erin we’re going out of town for the long weekend……if I “catch up” on Sunday evening when we return can I just post my photo of the daily entries from Fri and Sat then for points?

    It’s our anniversary!!

  5. i will try to find a pic….i did spinning class today

  6. April Mills says:

    You rock Erin! So glad to be a part of this…focus, focus, focus! :O)

  7. Banded Mary says:

    Im going to search for my heaviest picture photo. Its not pretty 😦 But 60 pounds lighter now so no turning back 🙂

  8. MrsToni SkinnyBritches says:

    It’s a cool crisp California morning and my warm CLICK protein mocha is calling me. The holidays are on my mind with this challenge and because my husband surprised me yesterday with our new California Christmas tree… a lighted artificial palm tree! After warming up my CLICK mocha drink and topping it with fat-free whipped cream, I was tempted to plop a tablespoon of mini chocolate chips on top. (The holiday “sweets monster” showed up!) But instead, I grated a portion of a mini sugar-free Hershey’s chocolate bar on top! I reminded myself there will ALWAYS be a healthy option! Will Toni be “Healthy Through the Holidays?” YES!

  9. Amy Smith says:

    Today, was a typical day, but this challenge has helped me to realize that today was “normal” for the smaller me! LOL In other words, I was super excited all day because a new Planet Fitness was opening today (about 20 minutes closer than the one I have been going to) and I made the reservations for my spring break trip to Discovery Island AND made plans for a winter quick trip to ski, tube, and snowmobile prior to my plastics in December. I would not have really thought about how this is different had it not have been for this challenge. Thanks! Wow, things are different! Prior to losing I know I would not have been planning a weekend of outdoor adventure in Florida or in Western Maryland!

  10. Victoria Athens says:

    Took the dogs for a walk. Before surgery I would never even go outside and be able to walk a block without being winded. It was wonderful to be able to be free to enjoy the outdoors again!

  11. Joia Jones says:

    Temptation from yesterday: My job as a teacher’s union staff member can be frustrating at times. When I’m in my office, I receive calls from union members who are generally upset with something that’s been done to them by a supervisor/administrator. After an extremely difficult call yesterday (made even more difficult because there was nothing I could do to help the member), I snagged a Hershey’s snack size bar out of the candy dish on my desk and scarfed it down…then followed it with two more after a colleague came in and I reported to her that “I need chocolate.” Followed that with a small handful of the autumn candy corn I have in a Thanksgiving jar on my desk as well…

    Why is there a candy jar on my desk? Well, it’s a great social tool for colleagues who come into my office throughout the day, and I often have union members come meet with me…good for their stress as well. 9.9 times out of 10, I don’t touch the stuff – not only has my LapBand had issues and I’ve been under direction to be on liquids for most of the time I’ve had this job (just started in July), but I don’t want to have to waste my daily calorie count on crap.

    I think the root emotions that got me to scarf down that candy were a general frustration that stemmed from many places…the immediate frustration of the call, undertones of frustration with my colleagues, and general anxiety over the need for LapBand revision surgery somewhere amidst the insanely busy schedule that is my November. I see the doctor on Thursday to discuss and schedule the surgery, but the OCD organized person inside of me needs to schedule this surgery and my life NOW. Ugh. I’m generally just anxious/apprehensive about many things…and the easy answer is to grab some candy – no thought, no fuss, no muss! Hell, I did it for years – although, back then, it was typically a stop through a fast food joint to load as many calories into my mouth as I could.

    Bottom line, I made sure to log that “snack” into my food journal (I utilize the bodybugg tool and website for that) and moved on. I only eat 1,350 calories a day, and that took up a meal-sized chunk of those calories on Monday, but that’s the way it goes. Weight loss surgery has been a blessing for me in that it helps me control my appetite, helps me focus on nutrition, calories, exercise, etc…but it is a DAILY (hell, hourly!) struggle to make the right choices. I truly believe that obesity is a disease, created by an addiction to unhealthy food. I just need to keep surrounding myself with positive people, energy and choose to maintain a health-centered focus on me!

  12. Amy Smith says:

    Sorry to sound like a broken record, but I got a good workout at the gym today. Prior to surgery, even if I would have gone I would never see the muscle soreness I feel tonight as a good thing! Today I also had a good day eating what I had planned and avoiding pitfalls. In the past, I would not have been at all concerned with things if it tasted good.
    Lastly, I am not sure many of you will understand, but I run agility with my dogs and it involves short bouts of running. Tonight at class while doing a course I got out of position and had to run the long way around the jumps which meant running further and longer and still running ahead of my dog!

  13. Today we were at a convenience store before a 2-hour road trip. I’d already had breakfast but I had such an urge to buy chips. I realized that it was just a habit rather than a need and I was able to overcome the temptation. I think I’ll wait in the car the next time my husband wants to go in the convenience store rather than subject myself to the temptation.

  14. Joia Jones says:

    Are we still posting temptations over here? I resisted temptation yesterday…I posted somewhere earlier about the fact that I had baked Halloween cupcakes for my office, but had finally taken all of the containers home to clean out/wash (I’ll be out of the office now until after Thanksgiving due to conferences and vacation). Upon emptying my car’s trunk yesterday of the dishes, in order to make room for luggage and to get the dishes in the dishwasher before I left, I remembered the last, lone cupcake still in one of the containers. What did I do?

    Threw. It. Away. Besides the fact that it was baked on October 30th (it was then November 10th), the pre-WLS Joia probably would have scarfed it down. Accountable-to-herself Joia, though, didn’t want to be bothered with the extra calories that weren’t *really* going to be worth it from a stale cupcake. When treats and goodies have you questioning your own discipline? Get. Rid. Of. Them. There’s no reason to leave that crap around to tempt you!

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