Grab your health by the horns!

I’ve struggled with my weight since I had my oldest daughter almost 11 years ago. As a teenager, I developed a pretty unhealthy lifestyle but since I wore little kids jeans and had a much more active metabolism, I didn’t realize how I was setting up adult Lori for failure. For instance, weighing in at all of 101 lbs my senior year in high school and wearing a size 12/14 gap kids jeans, I ate a vending machine honey bun for breakfast pretty much daily. I would often skip lunch all together or stuff my face with tortillas and queso at rosas. I didn’t workout and had given up all athletic extra curricular activities. 3 kids later and my weight has yo-yoed up and down for years. My closet is filled with things are that either way too big or way too small from skinny times and fat times. Obviously the weight I had put on was devastating to my self image but I hadn’t realized how the choices I was making were affecting my health. I tried just about every weight loss product on the market and had minimal results. My eating habits were not terribly dreadful and I was pretty active so I was incredibly frustrated with how much trouble I was having getting the weight off. A little over a year ago I found myself in a doctor’s office. I had literally felt like I had the flu for several months. I stopped working out because I had absolutely no energy. I could sleep all day if you would let me. My body felt achy and I was constantly suffering from headaches. My weight was fluctuating even more than usual and sometimes I had no appetite at all. I felt weak and drained constantly despite the fact that I was drinking 1-3 cups of coffee in the morning, 1-3 red bulls in the afternoon/evening, in addition to a well known health and wellness company’s energy drink at least once a day! As I was describing to my doctor how I was feeling she became concerned. Initially, she suspected that it may be more of an emotional issue due to the fact that I was adjusting to life in a new town and some stresses in my personal life but decided to run a few blood tests anyway. I’m not sure specifically what she was testing for but I know that we couldn’t pin point what exactly was wrong aside from the fact that my white blood cell count was low. We couldn’t pin point a culprit but she suspected it might have something to do with recurring sinus infections I was suffering due to severe allergies. She prescribed an allergy medication, some sort of oral steroid, and a nasal spray and said we would re-analyze the situation in a month. My first week or so I did feel a bit better so was relieved to not feel like death for the first time in a while. However, by the month’s end, I was back to feeling like I had been hit by a train. I was trying to hit the gym daily and truck through my aches and exhaustion hoping it would help but I ended up feeling even more terrible. My blood work that month again revealed a low white blood cell count. Over the next year, I had my blood drawn monthly and had numerous tests for everything from my thyroid to cancer. We could not find an answer for my mystery ailment. I cried because I was so desperate to feel normal again. I wanted energy to do fun things with my kids again and it was so frustrating not having answers. I was pretty convinced I was dying but wasn’t sure from what. During this time, I was seeing 2 different friends post about 2 different things that sparked my interest on social media. 1 friend was posting about Whole 30 and another about It Works products. I messaged 1 friend first about her Whole 30 journey and her health results with it. She said after reading the book It Starts With Food she began a lifestyle change that had improved her health in many ways from allergies to anxiety! I was curious so I read the book too and was shocked by how much food (even seemingly healthy food) can negatively impact our physical and mental health. Because a Whole 30 diet meant completely cutting out a whole lot of everything, I decided to ease into it with a Whole 7 instead. For 7 days I 100% followed the Whole 30 way. Guess what? After only 7 days, I DID feel better! Although I still have never completed and entire whole 30 program, I do stick to the lifestyle 75%-80% of the time. I try to stick to it more often but I also know for me, completely eliminating things and overly restricting myself, sets me up for failure. Sometimes, I try and make healthier versions of cheat foods or as Whole30 says SWYPO (sex with your pants on) meals. lol But here’s the deal, eating “clean” isn’t always common sense. Our food has evolved over the years so do your research folks. Funny thing is, my body now knows when I’ve filled it with junk. After a particularly long stint of clean eating with no cheats, my husband came home craving Rosas. I went along with it and everything tasted incredible going down but within about 30 minutes, I found myself face first in the toilet projectile vomiting. It wasn’t food poisoning, my body just literally rejected the junk. My kids say they notice the feeling of awful nastiness after eating a junk meal too. We hate feeling too full and sluggish after something greasy. I’ve talked my husband into making some healthier choices when he’s home but deep down, he will always be a pizza, burgers, and beer guy! lol Baby steps!

During this time of self enlightenment and research, I was approached by a friend about It Works products, I had seen he and his wife post about them and was really curious to try a few things. Somehow, he convinced me to sign up to be a distributor myself. Mainly because I got a discount on products and they were offering a great incentive for new distributors. I never intended to sell it, but figured I didn’t have anything to lose. When my greens and other products arrived I was really excited to try some stuff out. I haven’t yet found a product I hate but by far my favorite product is the greens. I mix them once a day with half orange juice and half water and have since stopped drinking coffee and red bull. Yep, you heard me, I no longer drink those things AT ALL. Which is amazing considering that I was a complete junky as I mentioned before. I now have the energy to get a brief workout in daily even with our busy schedules. Aside from the small amount of juice I use with my greens daily, I drink nothing but water unless I find myself out on the occasional girls night or date night where I do allow myself alcohol. Want to know the best part though? My blood work has been completely normal for several months now and I don’t feel like I have a chronic flu anymore! Cheery on top? I’ve now made some money and earned lots of my It Works products for FREE just for being a distributor and helping my friends and family improve their health!

Why am I telling you all of this? Because, I want YOU to feel better too. This journey for me no longer became a weight loss mission, it became a health mission. Sure I’ve lost a little weight along the way but that’s just a bonus for the way I feel. Take your health and the health of your family into your own hands. Read the book, do the research, find a plan that works for you but make yourself very aware of the foods and drinks that you’re putting into your body and into the bodies of your children! Buy organic, eat fresh not processed, drink some water, eat clean, be active, take your vitamins, and feel better! I would love to share some meal ideas and tips with you sometime when I’ve got a second but in the meantime, do your homework. Till we meet again! ❤

Getcha some It Works Greens right here!

P.S: I eat lots of Whole30 approved meals but I sometimes I take meal ideas from beach body’s 21 day fix and sometimes a few paleo goodies too. Check pinterest for ideas for keeping clean eating fresh and delicious!

BIG SEVEN

7 years. 364 weeks. 2,555 days. 61,320 hours. 3,679,200 minutes.

As of 5:00 p.m. today, that’s how long I’ve been married. 7 years, although it’s not a particularly large or traditional anniversary milestone, it is for me. I try not to get too incredibly personal where my marriage is concerned but it is with my husband’s permission that I share a little bit about our story. Our marriage has never been a walk in the park. In the 7 years since we said I do we have been through our fair share of trials. We’ve seen a deployment, an oil boom, 2 oil busts, a layoff, the birth of 2 children, 3 moves, and a whole lot in between. Last year however, we endured our toughest trial yet. As I’m sure those of you who personally know me or closely follow my blog are aware of, we lost my mother in law last August. Just one week shy of our 6 year wedding anniversary. That summer had been particularly strenuous on our marriage because it just seemed as though we had grown apart. I felt like Dave was mean and short tempered all the time, like he no longer cared about me and our marriage, and that he was incredibly selfish. He felt under appreciated, like I nagged constantly, and that I was trying to control him. Neither of us were budging and were both frustrated and burnt out on the relationship. Around June, I suggested maybe we take some time apart and perhaps give each other some breathing room without speaking while he was away at work to do some thinking. Within 2 weeks, we had decided to work on things and make some changes so that we could make our marriage work. We sort of just swept things under the rug at this point though because neither of us actually did anything to change. By August we were pretty miserable with each other but in attempts to reconnect, he took off work for our anniversary and my mother was planning to keep the kids for a few days so that we could spend some much needed one on one time together. The week before we were scheduled to leave, we got the news that his mother had passed and we quickly began making arrangements. We ended up spending our anniversary at the family ranch with all of his family as we laid her to rest. We were both really mourning the loss and trying to wrap our heads around it and really tried to lean on each other. By the next month however we were right back where we were before her passing. Mid September Dave came to me and said he was tired of fighting and he wasn’t sure he wanted to be married anymore. I hesitantly admitted I was feeling the same way and when he left for work later that day, we had decided it was more of a goodbye than a see you later. We had decided to separate. I realized pretty early on this wasn’t truly what I wanted but I was so frustrated I wasn’t sure what to do. Dave took a little longer however to come around. I won’t get into all the details of what happened between us in the weeks to follow but I will say we said and did alot of things to hurt one another. During our separation, my grandmother passed away and I found myself back home with my parents for the funeral. I spent 6 years praying for God to move in my husband’s heart. To change him. I never once asked for God to change ME. I never asked for God to move in MY heart and reveal to me what I was doing wrong because I was so focused on what he was doing wrong. I was so focused on my hurt and my resentment that I couldn’t see my contributions to the demise of my marriage. But the night of my grandmother’s funeral I ugly cried out to the Lord. I asked him to reveal to me what I could change in myself, I asked him to help me get over the hurt of the past, and finally I asked for peace and for comfort for whatever his will was for my marriage. I couldn’t beg him to make Dave want to be married to me anymore, I began to plead for HIM to invade my heart and make me okay with being on my own if that’s so what he wanted for my life. I asked him for strength and wisdom to be a strong mother for my girls through this difficult time. For the first time in weeks, I slept soundly through the night. When I woke up the next morning, I decided it was time to stop mourning my marriage. I wasn’t going to cry or beg Dave to stay, if he wanted to leave, I would let him and I would be okay. Just like that, God moved. Dave asked to see me that night, we talked, I cried, he asked for forgiveness, so did I. We decided to work on things and communicate more. He looked at me in a way I had never seen him look at me before. When I asked him what made him suddenly want to see me, he couldn’t really provide an answer other than he was just sitting there watching tv and felt like he HAD to see me. Something extraordinary happened that night. We became friends. Best friends. The month or so afterwards were difficult because we were still working through some things together and trying to mend some hurts. I’m sitting here in awe of the miracle God has worked in our marriage since then. My husband has become one of the most patient kind men I know. He always puts the girls and I first. He makes our marriage a priority and goes to church with me when he’s home. He calls me and texts me every chance he gets and makes me feel so loved daily. We truly enjoy each other’s company and when he looks at me, I can visibly see his love for me. I on the other hand probably could still work on my nagging but I do try harder to show my appreciation for all he does and sacrifices for our family. I’m asking God daily to show me how to love my husband more and to fully mend all of my past hurts. I spent many years being patient with Dave and I’m thankful he was patient with me this last year while I worked through some hurt, insecurities, and some struggles of my own. I’m glad I didn’t give up on him easily and glad he hasn’t given up on me. So while a 7 year anniversary may not seem like something super spectacular to you, in many ways, it was the most special milestone of all for us. It was the first anniversary of our new beginning, it was an anniversary I didn’t think we were going to make it to. We are so appreciative of our family and friends who vigilantly prayed with us and for us and truly fought for our marriage along side us.

Honey, I’m thankful for second chances. I promise to let my guard down and just live. I promise to *try harder* not to nag and to remember to pick up your dry cleaning. I love you 809238423740298840923374238409280 +7. I can’t wait to see what adventures our next year brings. ❤

Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate. Mark 10:9

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On our Wedding day August 9, 2008

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