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Posts from the ‘In the Equation’ Category

The power of acceptance

We can’t change what we cannot ACCEPT. And that includes ACCEPTING what we can & can’t control.

I was talking with someone the other day about my transformation journey and five-year anniversary and she fixated on one question: “Aren’t you mad that you have to work so hard to stay healthy and fit and that you’ll struggle with this for the rest of your life?” (No!)

In another conversation recently, a close friend was having a terrible time accepting the reality of depression and was spiraling deeper because of his refusal to accept it. It made me sad.

In a much more trivial moment, I was personally challenged to accept the answer I got from American Honda about a serious defect in my Honda CRV that might cause the engine to blow up and their process for dealing with it. (Don’t even get me started on this one!)

How many of you have had difficulty accepting a misfortune —  something you don’t really like or want in your life? Yep, I’m guessing pretty much everyone.

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Five lessons of five years living in the equation (sans -200 lbs)

With gratitude from the mountaintop

Those of you who know me personally or have followed my blog, know that I’ve used a mountain climbing analogy to describe my personal transformation journey. I truly believe that as we conquer the mountains, we conquer ourselves.

One of the fundamental things that’s different about me as I celebrate five years of living in the equation sans -200 lbs is that I now actively seek those mountains. I say YES!, accept the challenge, and aim to live a WHOLE life, not just a busy one. I do this because I know that as I conquer the mountain (literally and figuratively) I will grow and bloom. In fact, this is where the growth and bloom occurs.

As a fit and active girl, I take it to the mountain when I’m searching for answers, needing a restart, wanting to feel strong and fit, when I want to challenge myself, and to celebrate every significant milestone in this journey. It’s my go-to place…my sanctuary…the place I feel closest to the Universe. And, it’s where I’m actively conquering me.

Last week, I took it to my all-time favorite mountain — Penobscot in Acadia National Park, Maine. I embarked on a solo climb to celebrate my 5-year milestone and ponder my biggest and next question: “What do I need to say YES! to right now?” As usual, the mountain did not disappoint. Read more

Healthy, happy & whole sans -200 lbs. More than a weight loss story — it’s an inside job!

Celebrating 5 years of Lori in the equation!

Lori in the equation 5 years – May 2017

I woke up today on the official 5-year anniversary of living with “Lori-in-the-equation” and hopped on the scale. A cheer erupted when I weighed -202 lbs LESS than I did at my highest weight, confirming that I’ve successfully maintained my 200+ lb weight loss for 5 years. YES!

My pants are still 11 sizes smaller than when I started my journey in 2010 (though a few things have shifted!). I feel strong, healthy and fit! I’m climbing mountains for fun. I’m living a WHOLE life, not just busy one. And, putting myself in the equation and taking care of me now comes naturally. It’s non-negotiable.

As I mark this five-year milestone, I am beyond grateful and even humbled by these incredible gifts that have now become my norm.

Most people look at me as a weight-loss success story. But, my transformation journey isn’t about weight loss. It isn’t about diet and exercise. It’s not about counting calories or macros. Nor is it about deprivation…or even willpower. And, it’s not done.

The greatest gift I’ve given myself is not the hard numbers — though it feels incredible to be healthy and have reversed my health trajectory. Rather, the greatest gift is how I’ve changed on the inside. This is what makes it an inside job.

Here are just a few things that are different on the inside. I’ve learned to push past fear and stop being paralyzed by perfection. I no longer self sabotage and beat myself up for being imperfect. I know that I’m enough, exactly as I am. I’ve proven to myself that I can do anything I make up my mind to do. I’ve learned to love and accept myself, imperfections and all. I’ve discovered that self-care is a non-negotiable, and acquired new skills like the “restart” to keep me on track. And I’ve learned to change beliefs and life-long thought patterns that were keeping me stuck and stalled.

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Say YES!…it changes you

What do I need to say “yes” to?

This was the reflection question that came across my email about a month ago in the weekly podcast post, “Best of Ourselves” from my friend and leadership coach, Marcia Hyatt. The podcast was titled “Saying Yes.” Of course, I clicked on it instantly.

YES! has been my favorite word for five years.

It’s been a big part of my new life as a happy, healthy and fit girl living from the center of the equation. Since I hit my weight-loss goal in May 2012, I’ve been on a YES! mission to live, experience and DO all the things that I was too afraid or ashamed to do as a BIG girl living a small life. And I’m having a ball!

Saying YES! does NOT mean saying yes to everyone and everything. It does NOT mean giving it all away while focusing on others. That might have been my old definition, but it’s also how I lost myself along the way.

Nope. Today, saying YES! means pushing outside of my comfort zone…saying yes to the things that scare me…saying yes to living brave…going for what I really, really, really want…validating that who I am is enough. And, that distinction is absolutely critical. Read more

The mountain and me

Six years, countless climbs. Still conquering the mountain & me!

It started on this mountain in the depth of winter a little over six years ago. This is where I dug deep and found myself – my strength, my determination, my resolve, and my desire for a better life.

This is where I officially decided that I wanted more out of life than being obese and living small. This is where I decided I wanted it all. And most importantly, I decided — YES, indeed, I could do it!

It was December 2010 when I first met Oberg – a little mountain on Minnesota’s North Shore of Lake Superior. I weighed upwards of 360 lbs (down 20 from my all-time high). I was on day two of weight-loss boot camp when they told me we were going to climb a mountain…in snowshoes.

I was pissed, scared, and a bit defiant when it came time to suit up in our snow gear. Fear took over as I contemplated my first mountain climb ever. I stood there and allowed Jeremy, the young activities director, to strap on my snowshoes because it was too hard for me to bend over and I had no idea how to assemble those contraptions to my feet.

How time flies and circumstances change!

Today, March 18, 2017, I find myself back at the foot of Oberg Mountain Loop strapping on trackers over my hiking shoes. I am alone. I am -200 lbs lighter in load. I am strong, confident, resilient and beautiful. And this time, I am oh so grateful for the trip up what I now refer to as “my mountain.”

I KNOW this mountain. I know me. And I know that I will find exactly what I need today as I make my way up the deceivingly steady incline at the start of the trail, on the switchbacks, and as I make my way around the hilly 2.2 mile loop with breathtaking views. Read more

Creating healthy habits for life

For the past five years, I’ve been learning to live a healthy, happy life with Lori-in-the-equation…and it’s been awesome! During that time, I’ve been thinking about, writing about, and practicing how to live more intentionally, while creating new healthy habits for life.

I consider myself a work in progress and always will. I never take for granted my progress or success. Rather, I approach life with a growth mindset, and I’m careful to never assume that my progress on the healthy living front — and weight loss in particular — is so rock solid that I’m invincincible. (The day I do that would probably be the day I get fat again!)

Healthy living, including weight maintenance, self-care and striving to be a better human — is something that I have to work at every single day. And I’m okay with that.

Why? Because living from a place of healthy, happy and whole evolves and changes as I evolve, change and grow as a person. It evolves as I get older. As life circumstances change. I think that’s both the fun and beauty of it, it keeps life interesting. But it’s also the challenge. I’ve always said that the day I become boring or uninteresting and/or quit, is the day I lose the battle. The words “boring” and “quitting” are not in my vocabulary!

The truth about healthy weight maintenance is that it is HARD. And the game is constantly changing. Anyone who tells you it’s easy or they’ve got it together all the time — is either a liar or they don’t know the reality of it. Read more

Monday Motivation: We’ve got this!

Operation Restart Today

How do those three simple words “We’ve got this!” — or the singular counterpart, “You’ve got this!” — inspire so many people?  I say this mantra to myself and to those I work with on a regular basis. But I also hear the phrase often from others. Even Caribou Coffee now has it printed on a t-shirt.

For me, the phrase is positive, affirming, and encouraging. It’s the counter to the negative self talk I used to practice subconsciously. And, it makes you truly believe you can do it (because you can!). That’s the key.

This morning I’m writing for myself and for all of you out there who are feeling off track and in need of a serious RESTART. A reboot. Yes, already! Yes, in February. And yes, it’s okay if you need a little inspiration or motivation help. Join the club — the In-the-Equation Restart Club — I just made that up, but let’s do it, today!

The key is learn how to positively get yourself back on track when you slip — whether it’s one time, one day, one week, or you’ve totally fallen off the healthy bandwagon. It’s okay. Really. The most important thing is what are you going to do about it right now. I assert that the best thing to do is forgive yourself and RESTART.

What do I mean by RESTART? Read more

Getting back in the zone

Are you still “In Your Equation” or do you need a restart? Let’s get it!

Okay, anyone feel like they “lost it” in terms of living healthy in January? Be honest.

Not only did January speed right by, but so many people I’ve talked to recently are struggling with sickness, depression and/or the winter blues, and are feeling “off their game” already in 2017. If you’re in this camp, trust me, you’re not alone.

It’s common to start strong and be in your healthy zone — where you’re feeling great and you have the motivation mojo — only to have life throw a curve ball that gets you a bit off track, if not totally out of the zone. I’m feeling it, too.

An early January vacation to Cozumel (which was totally awesome) threw me a bit off my healthy routine at the start of the year. Then I came home and promptly got that awful bronchial crud (there are some nasty cold/flu viruses going around), followed by a case of the post-inauguration blues. Before I knew it, January was gone and I had slipped out of my healthy zone.

Whatever the reason, if you’re feeling a bit “off” or having trouble getting your mojo back, this blog is for you — and me. It’s time to stop making excuses, stop beating yourself up and RESTART. Get ready to go 100% ALL-IN, cause here we go! Read more

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