Weight Watchers, here I come!

clumps does ww

Guess who joined Weight Watchers?! Meeee! And the cool thing is, I’ll be blogging about my experience the entire time. I actually started last week but that was more of a dry run. It was hard, y’all. I’ve been on many weight loss challenges before and this is proving to be the most difficult because I am a breastfeeding mother. I express on average 60-70 oz of breast milk (through a breast pump) a day and aside from it being draining, it makes me incredibly ravenous. Breastfeeding burns a ton of calories and in return, moms HAVE to steadily nourish themselves. Weight Watchers is the only weight loss program that I’ve ever heard of that actually has a track for nursing moms.

I actually gained a pound from last week. Opps! I’m not worried. There will be up’s and down’s and I’m ready for ’em. I will even unveil my current size and where I’m looking to go.

So I’m 213 lbs. This is NOT baby weight as I was actually 216 before I gave birth to Elle. I only gained 9 lbs during my pregnancy and quickly lost it all. I am not embarrassed at being 5’6 and 213. Is it an ideal weight? No. But is it fixable? Absolutely. I am human and of course I have insecurities but I have always felt that I looked like I weigh less than I do. I toggle between a size 12/14 but I just happen to have a solid build. I will never be a small girl because I’m an amazon woman. I’ve got big thighs and legs and so when it comes to loosing weight, I like to set realistic goals for myself. I recently had a physical at my midwife’s office and my BP and cholestrol numbers are in healthy ranges, so really it’s just my weight that’s an issue. I have no intentions of being a size 2 and I don’t think my body would let me be a size 2 anyway.  But weighing less would put me in healthier ranges and in a happier disposition so I’m all for it!

This will be the biggest weight loss challenge yet. Trying to find the time to workout, battling the cravings and trying to stay satiated through breastfeeding will be tough but I can do it! I will also be giving you the ins and outs of the very cool Weight Watchers online program. Stay tuned for next week’s update!

Got any healthy snack or workout tips for me? Moms who have breastfed and tried to loose weight, I would love some advice from you!


*I have received a free 3-month pass to experience Weight Watchers online. I am not being paid to use or endorse Weight Watchers and thoughts are my own. People following the Weight Watchers plan can expect to lose 1-2 pounds per week.

Fabulous Fitness Wear from Macy’s. Aren’t I brave to model like this?

FACT: I’m in the gym. Like ALL the time. Remember that post I wrote when I was all like, “I’ve gained weight, blah blah blah blah”? Well, I got my bum in gear. I don’t mess around when it comes to health and fitness. Sure I have my insecurities like most women and may fall off track a bit, but honey, I ALWAYS make my way back to making fitness a priority. Right now I’m in the “zone” and I was beyond thrilled when GigaSavvy asked me to review some of Macy’s workout fits.

And why?

Because if you ever ran into in the gym, you may laugh. I don’t get all cute with my workout gear like some girls. Oh no. I’m that woman that’s all up in the gym with raggedy t-shirts from college volunteer events.

And if you catch me on a good day, I may be wearing something that actually matches.

But usually it’s just me in an old t-shirt that should probably be turned into a carwashin’ rag. And girl, don’t judge me…I am ca-learly very proud of my arms.

Having new workout clothes has turned me into a new woman though. Why haven’t I invested in some before? It just makes sense. Let’s rap on the Ideology Yoga Top first.

I got this seamless ultraviolet cami in an XL because I’ve a woman with a rack on her. I also wear two bras when I work out (the DD’s require this) and so I was hoping the XL was large enough to be comfortable and functional. Aaaand, it is! This top is comfortable, functional and breathable. I’m not sure how confident I’d feel it in by wearing it solo but it does fantastic for layering. Plus it was on sale for $12.99 (originally priced at $19.98) so guess who will be getting more of these on the ASAPness? Yep!

Then there are the Ideology Flared Leg Yoga Pants ($23.99 – regularly $43).

I’ve never actually owned a pair of yoga pants. Which is ridiculous since yoga and I have been tight for quite some time. And speaking of tight, I got these pants in a Large and they are hugging my curves beautifully. They aren’t just for yoga, of course. I comfortably ran and lifted weights in these. And my favorite thing about ’em? They’re long enough! Nothing sucks more than buying workout pants just for them to turn into workout capris after 1 wash. P.S. – my stretch marks say hi. 😉

And lastly are the Ideology Cropped Active Leggings ($27).

Leggings are everywhere and while some fashionistas say they aren’t for working out, I beg to differ. Actually, after trying out these leggings, I want to wear them EVERY time I work out. These are so so comfortable. I found them to be flattering to my figure, moveable and comfortable. I got ’em in a Large and kinda glad I did. At first I thought the XL would have been more comfortable for my size 12/14 hips, but I was able to squeeze into these without any problems.

I know my friends at the gym (anyone else have friends at the gym that they’ve never actually talked to?) will be SO happy to see me in some new unfaded and fancier workout gear. You know…because they care about these things. Ha! And I’m glad to see affordable workout wear. I never felt the need to invest in workout clothes because I always felt they would be too expensive. And what’s the point? I’m just gonna sweat ’em up anyway. But I’ve seen the light and who knows? Maybe for every 10 pounds I drop, I’ll take myself on a mini shopping spree? I think that sounds like a GRAND idea!

Any workout lovers in the house? What do you typically wear when you workout?

TMI Tuesday: My weight and my insecurities

 Ugh. Calories annoy me. Seriously. Why do they have to be in EVERYTHING? Calories should really only be in things  that I can’t stand. Like pickles and olives. Yes, I’m beginning a post complaining. My bad, y’all. But what can I say? Talking about my weight kinda makes me sad. Because here’s the truth….

I will always be “watching my weight.” Yep. I am a beauty blogger and I am not ashamed to admit that I have my share of insecurities. And most of them deal with my weight.

I’ve been watching my weight for as long as I can remember. It comes in spurts. I’ll go months with being obsessed with working out and eating. Something will happen and the next thing I know, I’ve gained all of the weight I lost. It’s a tiresome cycle. But it’s one that I will be dealing with for the rest of my life. And it’s not for the shallow reasons like wanting to fit into a bikini (pshht, never happening) or trying to look “good” for someone. My health will always be an issue for me because I’ve got to keep a close eyes on my reoccurring high blood pressure. It’s stressful, y’all.

Most of last year was my “down” year. I worked out a bit but not as much as I should have. I would go weeks between running or heading to the gym. I’d tell myself that I was too busy or too tired. And because of that, I gained a whooping 20 lbs. My size 12’s got tight and I was forced into a 14. I would see a developing double chin in the mirror and that alone prevented me from doing as many YouTube videos as I should have been doing. Self-loathing ensued; an emotion that I always deal with when I notice myself gaining weight.

In the Fall of last year, I got serious about my weight loss again and so I’ve been actively going to the gym (3-6 times a week) and doing what I have to do to get back in those 12’s. I’m getting there. And I have to remember that I am human. We all backslide from time to time and I can’t always fall into these depressive slumps when I realize that I’ve gained a pound here or there.

Keeping an eye on my weight is a lifestyle for me. I can’t just eat a breadstick without knowing that I’ll HAVE to work out the next day. Yes, I’ll eat my favorite ginger snaps, but never in peace. For I know that unless I work those cookies off, the pounds will pile up. This is my life. This is the way it has to be.

I’ll never be skinny. And I’m okay with that. I don’t mind that my thighs rub together or that my DD’s require my having to wear TWO bras when I work out. I don’t hate my body. But do I want to be in optimal health so that I can be around to keep bringin’ y’all mascara reviews in 2045? Hells yah.

I know weight is a sensitive topic for most of us women. Some of us want smaller boobs. Others want bigger boobs.  Some say they’re too skinny. Others long to be skinny. Mommas feel some kind of way about their post-pregnancy bodies and many of us fall victim to the lies society tells us. Is it important to be healthy? Absolutely.

But do you have to be a size 2, 4 or 6 to be healthy and beautiful. Absolutely not.

What say you? Are you happy with you weight? Or will it always be a struggle for you too?

Johnson’s Challenge: Baby Powder in my shoes!

There is a reason why my running shoes are making an appearance on Clumps. Just give me a second to explain. Okay, so remember I was tellin’ y’all that I was participating in the Johnson’s Challenge? Wellll…I’ve been coming up with alternative ways (in addition to stealing some of the great ones in the comments ;)) to use the baby powder, lotion, gel and and body wash.

And how to my stinky shoes come in to play? Hit the jump to see!

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50 million pound challenge: Gettin’ my Fit on Deck

Yikes! It’s been a while since the last check-in, uh? How is everyone doing on the fitness and health tip? Are we incorporating more greens? Drinking more water? Making healthier swaps? And uh…I can’t believe we haven’t talked about fitness yet!

Along with changing my diet, I have also been quite the gym rat for the past 2 years. There is a gym right on my condo’s property. It’s free and has treadmills, bikes, and free/machine weights. I used to hit the gym EVERY morning but now I’m going at least 3-5 times a week.

And at the crack of dawn too…

That’s right. I hit the gym at 6:00 in the morning. Because working out after work is SO not an option. But not working out is not an option either. Sheesh!

Even when I don’t head to the gym, I still need to get some kind of work-out in. Yoga is a MUST for me every morning and evening. I’ll go into more detail about that later but in the meantime, try the Sun Salutation here. Another way I get some good cardio and stretching in is by pulling out my Fit Deck cards.

Please tell me y’all have heard about Fit Deck before. No? They rock! They are a customized deck of exercise cards that give you little work-outs to do. I’ve got the Core Blast but they have many other deck options to choose from. So whether you sit at a desk all day, are expecting a baby or a teacher who wants to get your kids to move around a bit, these deck of cards will find a way to get you moving.

Take for example, the Vertical Scissor exercise.

I have a ridiculous obsession with ab work-outs so when I draw my 5-cards a day, this baby always manages to find its way in there. This card not only shows me WHAT this exercise will work out, but it gives me a picture and detailed instructions.

And you can go at your own pace when it comes to reps. 

When it comes to this one, I usually do 5 sets of 10. And then I pass out. The deck also includes information cards that can help you work out certain areas of the body. In this instance, stretching the lower body…

I like to toss them in my travel bag so I don’t make any excuses for not working out. Pretty cool, uh? They start at $9.95 and they even have decks for seniors, kids and for Yoga. Ohh, Mommy…I want that one! Learn more about Fit Deck here.

How are you getting your exercise in?

Other 50 million pound challenge posts:
Eat This, Not That
Greens 3x a Day
I’m no size 6, but I don’t care
Portion Sizes
Water Water is my friend

Love for Green Smoothies 

Join the Clumps of Mascara Team!!
Mascara Mamas team

This review contains a sample product sent for post consideration. Read our disclosure policy here.

50 million pound challenge: Weight frustrations

I have a confession. You ready?

I am hard on myself. Always have been. I often forget that change takes time. I like immediate results. I am patient while sitting in traffic. I am patient with toddlers. But patient with my own personal goals and achievements? Mega hard.

I recently had a doctor’s appointment and guess what? My freakin’ blood pressure is up yet again. 148/110 to be exact. I find this to be extremely disheartening as I feel like I am forever pushing myself to the limit physically. And when it comes to my diet, I have done a total 360. So why is my BP still through the roof?

My doctor has recommended that try to loose some weight. *insert exaggerated sigh* I felt like I was on the road to just weight maintenance. However, I have got to drop even more weight. Or else I have to get put on meds. Which would literally have to happen over my dead body as any form of non-holistic/herbal medication (OTC or prescribed) freaks me out.

I don’t even know HOW to loose more weight. It looks like I will have to consult with a professional. I’m not happy about it but I want to live a long and healthy life and will do whatever it takes.

This news is also another reminder to me…that keeping weight off is a lifestyle. It doesn’t end and for the most of us, it will be quite the challenge. Don’t let it discourage you. Continue doing what you have to do be healthy without being so hard on yourself. Yes, I work out 5-6 times a week. But it will be a snowy day in Florida before I turn down creme brulee. While most of my physical/dietary needs have changed, my love for desserts has not. And I’m okay with that. It is all about balance.

At the end of the day, I know that my high blood pressure is probably because of genetics. Not being in control of my health frustrates but I can’t let it stop me.

Hang in there, fam! We can do this!

Other 50 million pound challenge posts:
Eat This, Not That
Greens 3x a Day
I’m no size 6, but I don’t care
Portion Sizes
Water Water is my friend
Green Smoothies are my BFF

Join the Clumps of Mascara Team!!
Mascara Mamas team

50 million pound challenge: Fat and Fit??

Look at that….I’ve been doing a whole bunch of writing about healthy foods and smoothies but I have yet to talk about fitness! And that’s crazy considering fitness takes up a great chunk of my life.

The title of this post was inspired by A Black Girl’s Guide To Weight Loss. It was there where I saw this video.

So yeah…the Wii Fit STILL says I’m overweight. My BMI is 30.1. I work out 5-7 times a week and have a diet that is 50% raw vegetables. Could it be that I am too fat and fit? Er uh…where do I begin with this?

Working out is important. And it’s one of those things that I always knew but ignored. For most of my life, I always made excuses for why I didn’t want to work out.

Hit the jump to continue…

“I don’t have time.”

I don’t want to mess up my hair.”

“I hate sweating.”

“But I fell down on my knee when I was 6 and it still hurts.”

All excuses for why I didn’t want to work-out. I was never an athlete. I was the typical kid in that I spent a lot of time outside running around, swimming and riding my bike but I was never on any team. In 10th grade I tried out for the volleyball team and gave up the 2nd day of conditioning. What a punk, right?

But now you can’t stop me from working out. And I’m tellin’ y’all…if I can do it, anyone can. Many ask what my motivation was. What finally got me to be a regular in the gym. It’s very simple.

High blood pressure. 

While I don’t have the latter, people in my family do. My blood pressure was in the 140’s when I was only 22 years old. The thought of being put on medication scared the devil out of me. I knew changes had to be made. Changes that I probably wouldn’t like. Here’s how to do it…

1. Set a goal for yourself. Be it a dress size, weight or a challenge. Find  a realistic goal to look forward to. It was always easier for me to work-out when I knew I was working towards something I really wanted. I continue to do this every time I work-out too. If I am running outside, I always look at a marker (be it a tree or sign) and I push myself until I get to that marker. It is never easy but congratulating yourself on that little accomplishment does wonders for your self-esteem.

2. Have a support system. This is SO important. And they don’t always have to be people in your immediate life. Join social networking sites for those in the same position as you. Follow your favorite nutritionists or work-out folx on Twitter. Having the support of others really kept me going on those days when I felt like giving up.

3. Realize that it takes time. If you aren’t used to working out, don’t expect for it to be easy the first two weeks that you do it. It takes time for your body to adjust. And it is really more mental than anything. I FORCED myself to work-out every day for a month. After that month, going 4-5 times a week seemed easier.

4. Do not let yourself make excuses. I know, easier said than done, right? Personally, I feel awful on days that I don’t work out when I know I’m supposed to. Even if I can’t make it to the gym, I try to jump on the Wii Fit, jump rope, do some yoga or at least eat lighter that day. If being active is what you seek, make time for it. We make time for everything else, right? If you are a TV watcher, do lunges and squats during commercials. If you work at a desk all day, do mini-ab work-outs. The more conscious you are of working out, the fewer excuses you will make.

5. Tell yourself you can do it! This sound super lame but it really works. Positive thinking goes a long way. Especially when being conscious about health and fitness. Stop obsessing over what you used to look like. Stop fantasizing over having a body like your favorite celebrity. You are already beautiful. Tell yourself this and keeping reminding yourself that being healthy is way more important than how you look on the outside.

I’m no professional. I just want to be healthy. Not skinny. But healthy. Some confuse my active working out for wanting to be small. I have long accepted the fact that I will not be a size 2. Or 6. It is not in my genetic make-up. Where I’m from women are “thick”. Thick is fine but healthy is better.

I challenge you all to work-out to the best of your ability.  Work it out! If you have any tips or ideas, please share them!

Other 50 million pound challenge posts:
Eat This, Not That
Greens 3x a Day
I’m no size 6, but I don’t care
Portion Sizes
Water Water is my friend
Green Smoothies are my BFF

Join the Clumps of Mascara Team!!
Mascara Mamas team

50 million pound challenge: Water Water is my friend…

Let’s rap about water.

Do you drink enough?

Or are you stuck on sodas and high fructose juices? Would you rather drink coffee or a mixed drink than water? Pull yourself together, sister. Water is your friend. You NEED it. And not just when you’re thirsty.

I drink a little over a gallon of water a day.

It’s as if my body craves it. I mean, at any minute of the day…you can find me drinking from some bottle.

Purchasing water bottles can be expensive so I installed a filter in my kitchen. I fill up a gallon of water each day to take with me to work. That gallon sits at my desk and by the end of the day, it’s empty.

And in case you didn’t know, here are some important reasons why you SHOULD drink water:

  • Water can help flush out those nasty toxins in the body. Every few days I add either fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar to my water. Both are great at detoxifying.
  • Water helps food digest properly. You know that yucky feeling in your tummy when you’ve eaten too much food and hours later you STILL feel a bloated mess? Um yeah…that’s constipation. Water can clear that up!
  • Water is good for the skin! And Lord knows I need as much help with clear skin as possible….
  • Water can aid in weight loss. Try replacing water with coffee, alcoholic beverages and sweet drinks for week and see what happens. Unlike all of those drinks, water has ZERO calories, ZERO fat and ZERO sugar.
  • Water makes for a better work-out. This is so true! I find that when I’m not drinking any water at all before and during my work-outs, I am more sluggish and tiresome. (source)

While experts say we are SUPPOSED to drink 8 glasses (or 8 ounces) of water a day, I think just making sure that you aren’t dehydrated is enough. However, if you’re on a weight loss journey, I think it’s important to keep track of everything. Even water. I keep my water in water bottles with numbers on them.

That way I can know for sure that I’ve had enough to drink in days I don’t drink from my gallon. Between my water and liquid heaven that is this….

I’m good! I’ve never been a coffee (yuck) or alcohol drinker so drinking only water and green smoothies works for me. On the weekends I’ll splurge a bit and drink a Shirley Temple (I’m such a kid, ha!) or sweet tea.

But at the end of the day, it’s water that keeps me feeling good. If you haven’t made friends with water, start incorporating more glasses of it in your daily schedule. If you need help, put an alarm on your watch or in your phone to remind you to drink more.

Any avid water drinkers out there?

I’m going to be posting about fitness the next few Challenge posts. You ready? Let me know what y’all think about these posts. Are they helpful? Don’t hesitate to send me any emails at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com if you have any suggestions or questions!

Until next time….

Other 50 million pound challenge posts:
Eat This, Not That
Greens 3x a Day
I’m no size 6, but I don’t care
Portion Sizes

Join the Clumps of Mascara Team!!
Mascara Mamas team