Overwhelmed and Motivated

I posted last week about my weight struggles.  And since sharing my awful fat-feeling stories, I’ve been overwhelmed with the messages and support you all have given me.  Seriously.  You know how to make a girl cry!

I’ve had lots of people ask me what diet I’m following.  And a few who want me on their pill, shake or powder plan.  I get it.  Everyone needs to make money.  And I loved hearing from everyone!  But I’m choosing not to follow any diet or consume a powder this time.  No colorful drinks, or shakes to consume.  It’s awesome if that’s how you’ve lost weight.  But it has never worked for me.

So what am I doing?  Quite simply, I’m going to the gym.  Lifting weights, walking, sweating, getting stronger.  Nothing more than 30-45 minutes a day thus far.  All I have done is searched for weightlifting workouts and picked one to follow.  I found this one.   http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/lee-labrada-12-week-lean-body-trainer.html.  It’s easy to follow, has videos on exercises I may not understand and includes some nutrition information as well.  A few of the exercises require equipment my small-town gym doesn’t have.  In that case, I substitute crunches or another exercise that might be similar.  I love to feel strong!

My key to workouts is this.



That clock says 4:43am.  That is what time I need to go to the gym to get a workout done.  That’s early.  Honestly, I feel better when the workout is done.  I’ve spent too many years thinking I’ll workout at home after work.  Then something happens on the farm, with the kids or The Farmer gets pulled away and I can’t get away from the house.  So my time is now in the super early AM hours.

After 7 days of workout out every day, and consumer NO Diet Pepsi over the course of those days, this happened.



I lost 10 pounds.  Truly.  10 pounds.  I’m not crazy enough to think that will happen every week, but I’ll take it for my first week!  I’m only weighing myself once a week.  Saturday mornings the scale comes out from hiding and I will get on it.  This week I nearly fell over by the results.

I lay all of this out there to thank you.  Thank you for believing in me, for offering encouragement, for jumping on your own #healthyfencerows journey.  I know in a few weeks I’m going to need a kick in the pants.  So get your punting shoe ready, just in case a Diet Pepsi calls my name.  In the meantime, I hope you’ll join me on the journey.  It’s a long road ahead.  One that is requiring baby steps the whole way.  My next obstacle to overcome is sleep.  I don’t get enough of it, EVER.  This one may take a while.


Saying Goodbye and the Last Meal

This is my Grandpa.

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I took this picture when we were butchering hogs this past winter.  Butchering is a time-honored tradition my family has done for decades.  We all gather, even the youngest kids, to process and prepare the meat from hogs and cattle raised on our family farms.  The meat goes in our freezer to be used throughout the year.

Butchering with Grandpa is one of my favorite things to do by his side.  And now it’s tucked safely away as a great memory.

We lost Grandpa a few weeks ago.  While he hadn’t been in the best of health, I never expected him to be gone.  Grandpa was very solid in his faith and I have no doubt that he is in the presence of God now.  Yet, I long for a hug, kiss on the cheek or a chat with him.

Grandpa called me Jammer.  It was a nickname he gave me when I was quite small.  I loved hearing him holler “Jammer” at me.  I’m not sure I ever really heard him call me Jeanette.

The last time I saw Grandpa was just two weeks before he passed away.  As we were enjoying the day, I had a fleeting thought that I should take a picture of him and I.  It had been some time since I took a picture of us together.  But the negative voices in my head talked me out of it.  Because I look terrible in pictures.  Because I’m fat, my butt is big, my face is too round, my hips are ugly.  So I didn’t take the picture.  And now the moment is gone.  I can’t get rid of that horrible, negative selftalk and blame placed squarely at my feet.

I am the oldest grandchild on this side of the family.  I was blessed to have him for 41 years.  Who actually gets to say that anymore?  He lived a great life, worked hard, and enjoyed the simpler things in life.  I treasure every memory, but long for so much more.

Since he passed away, I’ve been feeding the empty feelings and pain with food.  I already was overweight, but the number on the scale is approaching a ridiculous amount and I’ve gone into panic mode.  I never want to eat again.  I want to try some crazy quick-fix diet plan to get the weight off.  I want to go explore bariatric surgery and subject myself to something that truly scares me.

Instead, I’m trying to take a deep breath and make a plan.

Starting with looking back.  This was my last crazy meal.


I ate this one night after a very long day at our Indiana State Fair.  It’s high fat, extremely tasty cajun food.  Complete with cheese bread that is so very yummy.  Yet I know my arteries were clogging as I enjoyed it.

So what changes are going to be made? Small ones, baby steps, one at a time changes.  Anytime I’ve tried to lose weight, I’ve jumped in feet first and end up falling on my butt. So I’m going to take it little by little.  This week, I’m starting with ending my affair with Diet Pepsi.  I drink a 32 ounce Diet Pepsi every morning on my 85 minute commute to work.  I know those are not good for me.  So this morning I drank water.  And a bit of coffee.  Let’s not lie, I still want caffeine.  But only a small cup of coffee.

I’m also going to start lifting weights this week.  I’ve found a plan that is a 12-week lifting/cardio plan.  But there aren’t rest days built in and I’m a bit hesitant to once again jump in feet first.  So I’m going to modify it to include a few days of rest and see what kind of progress I will make.

I’ve often wondered if I would have more friends if I was skinnier.  Are people ashamed to be seen next to the girls with big hips?  Do we only want to hang out with people who make us look good?  Don’t get me wrong.  I have a big group of friends and a few who I know are by my side through thick or thin.  I love them immensely.  But have you ever wondered if someone would talk to you if you were thinner? I guess I have.

Want to join me?  I could use some accountability!  Now, for my local friends who may see me drinking a Diet Pepsi at an early morning cross country meet or basketball game, feel free to question me!  Just be prepared to step back. I  may bark at you!

I’ll blog my ups and downs.  The good and bad.  And will hopefully be able to show an improved me in about 6 months.  Maybe then I’ll share my weight and what I’ve lost.  But until then, that number is too embarrassing to share!  I’ll also tweet my progress.  Find me on Twitter as @indianawinebabe.  Follow #healthyfencerows to link to the blog and let’s share the journey together!

Loosing Grandpa was a big wake up call.  I miss him so much.  But I can’t keep feeding the emotions with food.  I’ve always fed my emotions.  And it’s taking its toll on my body.  Time for a change.

Now I’m off to find my workout clothes.





Wilted Lettuce Dressing

I’ve always loved to plant a garden.  I think as a farmer, I just have a super fondness for dirt.  However, the garden is always ready to be weekend and picked around county 4H fair season.  So the weeds grow and I get frustrated and stop tending it like I should This year I tried […]

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Where can you buy the pigs we raise?


I’m often asked where people can buy the pigs we raise on our farm.  The answer isn’t exactly an easy one. We do butcher our own hogs.  Every year over Christmas, my family gets together to butcher, cut and wrap up meat for our own consumption. Grandpa supervises. We always have ham, ribs and lots […]

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Can you Feed Your Family For $50 or Less?

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I’m continuing my look at our monthly grocery bill with a challenge of seeing how cheaply I can feed my family of 5 hungry people!  This series, brought to you by my friends at Indiana’s Family of Farmers, features four meals of breakfast, lunch dinner or a combo of all three.  And each meal much […]

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Key Lime Pie

key lime collage

I love all things citrus.  I’m not a fan of chocolate so citrus is always my go-to dessert recipes.  And since spring planting season is upon us, I’m always seeking recipes that I can take to the field and feed our big crew of planting and manure hauling folks. This pie is one that I’ve […]

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Can you Feed Your Family for $50?

chicken tetrazzini

As a farmer, feeding people is my priority.  I want to make sure families are eating three good meals a day, each meal with meat, veggies and milk to drink!  But how far will $50 go in the grocery store? I’m excited to bring you this new series, from my friends at Indiana Family of Farmers.  […]

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Yummy, Easy Vanilla Sheet Cake

Easy Vanilla Sheet Cake

There is nothing tastier that cake.  And this recipe for a Yummy, Easy Vanilla Sheet Cake literally takes the cake for an easy treat! The Farmer and I are going to celebrate our 20th anniversary this summer.  It’s been a blessed 20 years, years that I can’t imagine going through without him.  Years that have […]

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What do Farmers do on the Weekend?


Growing up, I knew if I was going to see my Dad on a weekend, then I was going to need to ride with him as he did hog barn chores.  So I spent many hours in the truck as he went from farm to farm feeding pigs.  Or I followed in his footsteps as […]

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16 Pounds Lighter, Yet Miles to Go

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I’ve blogged many times about my effort to lose weight.  I’ve been on every diet known to man.  Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Seattle Sutton, Shakeology, Slimfast and others.  Through all of those, I’ve lost a lot of one thing…money.  And yet I’ve managed to gain 90 pounds in the past 12 years.  90.  I’ve put […]

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