After sitting for an entire summer, watching the scale go up and down, hitting anywhere from 208-218, I am so glad to see movement of my weight to under 208! I know it’s not much, but I feel like doing a victory dance. My nutrition and high activity level are working together, again, in my benefit. Maybe I should have bought that eyelash extension Groupon; I may earn my reward for getting under 200 sooner rather than later!

Back To It

I didn’t go far, I didn’t go long, but I went on a run, on this 90 degree day. Granted, it was 8:AM when I hit the road so the scorching heat had not yet hit, but it has been 19 days, one back injury and half of a root canal since my last run, but who’s keeping track, eh? Anyhow, it was short, but I was so glad to do it. I have the second half of my root canal tomorrow, so I’ll run in the morning. Hopefully the recovery will be a little more comfortable this time around and I can get back to running quicker!

Today we headed to Wild Waves- a water park, south of Seattle, that is home to a myriad of my childhood memories. Not too much has changed there since my childhood, but over the years they’ve added more roller coasters and rides, something that was a difficulty in my past. The last time I was at Wild Waves, I was at my peak of heaviness- about 340. I tried to ride their wooden roller coaster but couldn’t get the ride to latch closed. I had to take the walk of shame past all the kids, terribly humiliated. Today I rode that very roller coaster with my daughter. It was way better than it ever would have been before, simply because I got to ride it with her! Three cheers for fitting on roller coasters again! 🙂
Thanks to all of you who voted for Denise! She won second place! I’m not sure if she won anyTHING, but I’m so pleased that she did so well! Thank you if you did cast a vote for her!


This was a straight-up, solid week. I’m not impressed with the quantity of workouts, but I am pleased with my nutrition and that I actually got out on more than two occasions to haul my tail around the block a few times. Tracking my food this week allowed me to see that I’m still eating within my allotted calorie allowances, that it’s allll good. I also learned that I can incorporate a lot more whole grain goodness into my diet. It’s also clear to me that something needs to shift, though. I’m exercising enough and eating little enough that mathematically I should be losing fat. But I’m not.
I was reading a book called Fat Chance recently, and while it was hyperbolic and shared a lot of scary evidence with pessimistic options for solutions, I liked one particular part that was talking about how a calorie is not a calorie. That the quality of the calorie matters greatly, too. When I reflectively notice that there are places where I could incorporate whole grains, I immediately light on this idea. That and salt. I need to lay off the salt.
Earlier in the week I was feeling really good. Like, do you ever have those moments when you start feeling extra cute and slender and like va va voom? Yeah. Like that. I hate it when I go from feeling gorgeous and glowing, to feeling super dumpy and chubby in the not good ways. Not curvy (which is good), but plump and roly-poly-fattish. I know it’s just my brain being a stinker, but I hate that. Grr. It’s not fun to look in the mirror and at every picture with a hyper critical eye. Bleh.
So today I had to be extra awesome. No, really:


I was extra proud today. We woke up bright and early. I was not interested in a repeat of my Friday morning when there was no milk for the coffee, therefore Tamara did not get her coffee and was supremely grumpy as she headed to work… So I was laying in bed this morning and wondered aloud if I should ride my bike to the store to get milk. For my coffee. To stave off Grumpy Girl. I had all of these lovely, Parisian inspired images running through my head of milk in bottles and crusty loaves of fresh bread in my bike basket as I made my way over the cobblestone roads, beret perched slightly askew atop my pageboy cut… You get the idea.
Bradley was game, and except for the Parisian themed ridiculousness, we had a nice ride to and from the QFC by our house. It’s only two miles or so each way and I think we realized a new method of locomotion for the Lj’s to get around. Then, to prove my complete awesomeness, we also went for a run. It was only a couple of miles, but still- a bike ride and a run, allll before noon. Plus we cleaned out our garage, swam in our pool and moved a freezer. Before noon! I felt quite accomplished this morning! So accomplished, in fact, that I felt completely guiltless as I sat with a good friend of mine while we shared stories in the afternoon sun.
Whatta day. The best kind. 🙂

New Running Record!

Every once in a while I get these big ideas that I know will scare my husband a little. At around six miles his knee gets a little sore, so he’s hesitant to push past 4-5 miles at a go, but hey! I’m training for the Disney Half Marathon here, I need to be pushing my mileage! You’re probably wondering what my big idea was, and it was just to run until I hit my limit. So often, I feel like I can just go forever if only I can sustain the boredom of really long runs, but I’ve been wondering how long I can really go until I’m tapped out. It turns out, six miles is my wall. I was going along pretty well, but after I’ve been running for a bit, sometimes my left hip aches and my groin ligaments hurt! Today was no exception, but, like when I first began to run, I decided to run through the pain. If I stop whenever it hurts I’ll never go again! I started aching at around 4.5 miles and at five I had to walk a hill, I was just so tired (at 11mph- I know- but still)! I ran until I hit a small hill right after our sixth mile, and I had to be done. So my wall is six miles. For now.. That, too, will definitely change in the very near future.

We had eight girls sleeping over Friday night. It was pretty awesome. We let my daughter invite all the girls in her class and most of them came. My own parents used to let me have ‘just because’ slumber parties at random times throughout the year, so I didn’t think it was that big of a deal! But as each parent dropped off their daughter they commented on our bravery at having that many girls sleeping over. I started to worry, but as the evening wore on, I started seeing the character of the people my daughter has allied herself with. She has great taste in friends and I wouldn’t hesitate to invite them over again! This was Gigi’s first authentic big girl party. She realized, for the first time, that party games aren’t necessary. They had more fun dressing up in princess dresses and singing along to the Frozen soundtrack. They were the cutest group of 11 year olds that I have ever seen. 🙂



I am staying within my goals. I have worked out every day this week and I’ve been making smart food choices. Guess who weighed in at 213 today? Uh huh! Oh yeah! Tam-ah-RAH! That’s four pounds gone since I started diet bet. Sigh… It feels so nice to work hard and see results like that. Moments like these teach me that I really can make a change if I put my mind to it. That determination again, popping up, popping in, reminding me to enjoy the smell of the brownies in the staff room, to spend time with them, to study them, but then to walk away from them. Brownies are sweeter, tonight in memory, having never had tasted them during the day. 🙂
Tonight I got home and received a comment from Leisa about how she binge read my entire blog in the past few days from beginning to end (totally flattered!). I have totally crushed out on a blog in the same way before- hello, runsforcookies and brittanyherself! Leisa unknowingly prompted me to do the same, so I started at the beginning, right here at Tamara Shazam, and started reading my articles, one by one. Presently, I’ve made it to April and I’m pretty amazed at the ridiculously positive, can-do attitude I had back then. Frankly, I’m pretty amazed just that I managed to come this far in a year… It makes me feel pretty proud of who I am and the chutzpah I have.

It’s strange to toot my own horn like this, but I keep reminding myself that I’m allowed to do that here. 🙂
Bradley and I went and bought some of that fancy schmancy dessert tea that I’ve been reading all about. I end my nights with chai, lately. I have a huge mug and in it goes 1 cup of hot skim milk, 1 cup of hot water, 1 tablespoon of half n half, 2 tablespoons sugar free vanilla syrup and a India chai spice packet. I sip on it all evening until it’s lukewarm, and even drain the dredges in the morning, cold. I love it and it costs me right around 100 calories. I don’t get my new teas until Valentine’s Day, but I’m stoked to sip on my Slimful Chocolate Decadence and cococaramel sea salt from Teavana very very soon. I think it was good to go buy them early so I can truly look forward to when I finally get to enjoy my liquid chocolate!

Check In on NYE Goals

I know it’s only been two days. I KNOW! LOL!
But so far, this year is off to a great start towards meeting my goals. Because I believe in small goals and small celebrations when I meet those goals, I’d say I’m pretty successful. Why?
1. I have started exercising like I did in the beginning. Like back in the olden days of April, 2013. If I eat, take a walk. I tell myself there is no reason why I can’t do something (like run third mile) if I know that I really can (and I really can). I spend time on my wiiFit working my core. I’m playing around with my weight machine. I’m living my life harder on purpose. I’m making progress.
2. I’ve started walking all the time. My daughter has had a million play dates this break and I have walked to them all, even the sleepover ones with excessive luggage. And today I walked three sides of a block that I really only have to walk one side on. Also known as ‘taking the scenic route’. I am shooting for the 10,000 steps per day, and when I’m not working at my job that’s hard to get. I’ve gotten close every day but today was the first time I passed that goal this break.
3. I’ve re-engaged with my passions. I watched Andrew Solomon give a TED talk last night all about depression. He spoke so eloquently and gave such a clear description of what it feels like to live with depression, panic and anxiety attacks. In his talk he brought up that the opposite of depression is not happiness, it is vitality. I had never thought of that before- but it’s true. As I was sinking lower and lower into the pit this past December, I became disinterested in teaching, in losing weight, in working out, in researching nutrition, researching muscle building, in Christmas, in my kids… I was pretty much just interested in making it through the next day, the next hour, the next minute. This break I knew I needed a BREAK. Light socializing, no or few commitments, downtime, focus time, reflection time. That’s what we did and I am coming into 2014 renewed and refreshed, re-engaged with my passions and ready. It feels so good.

***The first and last ten minutes were amazing, the entirety is beautiful, though, too.***
4. I am killing the diet bet! Want to know how? Well, remember those extra pounds that packed on over Christmas? A full bakers dozen- 13 of them, if I remember correctly. It was astounding how quickly they all jumped on and clung. I should have known they were short lived, though. As soon as I returned to my solid exercise habits and healthy eating they started melting off. I’m four pounds down already! Yahoo! That feels very, very satisfying.


Let’s Compare, Shall We?

You can always tell when I like a picture that I take of myself. The picture I took Thursday surprised me so I started making the infamous comparison pictures…

The difference here is about five years and 130 pounds. 130! Isn’t that amazing? Like, my chin looks so incredibly different, but my eyes are so much more visible. I had NO idea they were so hidden before!

These ones are almost exactly one year apart. Really, about 13.5 months if you want exactness. 🙂 The first was taken on my 39th birthday, the second on Thursday. The difference is about 80 pounds. That is a very big difference as well. 🙂