Friday, 29 April 2016

Finals are FINISHED!!

This is gonna be a pretty quick update. Not much new to report.

I finished all my finals last week and so my primary goal since then has been getting a job. So far, no interviews or callbacks which is pretty discouraging, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

As for my weight, I've been stuck in a rut lately. Haven't gained anything, haven't lost anything. I admit I've been eating not the healthiest, but I think that combined with my stress from finals is what's kept me at the same level. Also because of the lack of a job I can't afford my own food and so I eat whatever is provided for me without too much complaint.


Starting weight as of 04/02/16: 242lbs
Current weight as of 29/04/16: 231lbs
Goal weight: 180lbs

~ Courtney

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Clinical II - CHECK!

I feel like a zombie. But in a good way?

We just finished our second semester Clinical and all I can think is . . . finally. I'm not sure how other programs do it but my program has it so that you have a fast tracked semester until reading week, and then directly after reading week Clinical starts for three days a week for six weeks (Mon-Wed) and then classes are condensed into Thurs and Fri. For every week of Clinical, I had to complete a research tool (research on the resident-medications, what type of lifts, toileting routine, general care info, etc), reflective journaling, and on top of that we needed to do charting every day. (Somewhere in there, we also had to complete two nursing care plans and also a personal learning goal).

Honestly? Not sure how I survived the semester. I'm not totally done yet, I have a few tests before the last day of classes and then I'll have to deal with finals but still. I'm officially done the 5:30am mornings!

BTW, I cried. 

Not at the facility like I thought, but on the way home I definitely did. It was so difficult having to say goodbye to everyone I've had the chance to take care of, and especially to my favourite lady. My friend and I almost started crying in the stairwell after we left her; it was awful and even thinking about it now makes my chest feel tight. I had to tell my favourite lady that I was leaving today, that it was my last day. She was okay at first, she just said that she would see me next week and then I had to let her know that I wouldn't be coming back. She's this tiny Hungarian woman and, because of her diagnosis, she reverts back to speaking Hungarian when she's upset. I couldn't get her to tell me what was wrong in English for five or ten minutes, until she finally told me she was wishing me luck and she said "God bless you, dolly. I will miss you." Now I'm not religious but I know that she is, and I almost broke down right then and there. 

If you're considering going into nursing, know that you will cry at least once during Clinical rotations. You will get attached. They will get attached to you. And then it will be your last day and you'll say goodbye to them and they will say something that will pull at your heart strings and it will be emotional. 

As for staying healthy, I admit I've been pretty slack on it. I've been having the hardest time getting up early enough to eat breakfast or remembering to pack a lunch the night before and Clinical was so busy that more than half the days, I never took a break (I usually neglected to tell my Instructor as that is her # 1 RULE). Just from walking and being on my feet all day, every day, running between the cottages and up and down the stairs, I've still lost weight. I realize it's not the healthy way to lose weight, but I've been too busy to care recently. Now that everything is going to be slowing down, I'm hoping to get back on track and start getting back to a normal routine (one where I don't have an alarm set for 5:20am that tells me "you asked for this, get your butt out of bed").

I'll hopefully update sometime this week or this weekend with my numbers to get me back to being a little more motivated. 

~ Courtney

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Quick Update

My life has been crazy.

I've been doing my second semester Clinical which is three days a week, and the facility that I'm working at is in a town half an hour away from me. I'm so tired by the time I come home that I've been crashing without really doing anything. It's been difficult trying to eat breakfast everyday because if I have the opportunity to sleep a little longer (even if it means skipping breakfast), I will chose sleep hands down. I did weigh myself yesterday and was surprised that my weight is down, although because of Clinical I'm on my feet all day running around getting plenty of exercise. (Also re-positioning maybe? Who knew frail old ladies could be so heavy!)

I'm loving this semester of Clinical though. During first semester, I was so nervous, so scared that I was going to do something wrong, that this wasn't the right career choice for me, or that I wasn't very good with patients. This semester though, I am so much more confident in what I'm doing, and I love all of my residents! This one lady especially; she has dementia and has difficulty recalling new information, but for the past four weeks, she has remembered my name! She also thinks my friend and I are sisters, and she's always asking for "those sisters who take care of me."

I'm definitely going to cry when this semester is over (only 20 more days...)

Monday, 29 February 2016

Clinical & Chinese Food

So, I started my second Clinical today and let me just say: holy crap. I am going to be so incredibly busy for the next 6 weeks that I'm dreading it. It doesn't help that I was placed in a tiny town half an hour outside of my city and I am a terribly nervous highway driver.

Another thing my clinical is complicating is how well I'll be able to stick to my healthy food habits. I'm never organized enough to plan my lunch the night before and have it all prepped and ready to go. And since my commute is a half an hour away, I refuse to get up any earlier than I absolutely have to (and that usually includes skipping out on a packed lunch). For reference, it takes me usually 5 minutes to wake up; 15 minutes to do hair and makeup (Clinical style AKA barely presentable); 5 minutes to get dressed; and I give myself 5 minutes to grab my backpack and fill my water bottle. All in all, a half hour. Plus my commute time and a 5 minute variable cushion, I set my alarm for 5:55 to be at Clinical by 7.

Sleep is precious to me.

Other than today though, I've been doing fairly good. I'm on Day 8 and I had my first cheat meal. My Clinical instructor ended up running out and grabbing us donuts and then my friend (who grew up in the town) wanted to go for Chinese food. If there's one thing I can't say no to, it's Chinese food (or potatoes for that matter).

There was a time when my boyfriend would pack my lunch for me... ah, the good ol' days. Although I think my motivation is getting to him. He's slowly been restricting his portions and we've stopped going out for supper nearly as much.

Hopefully the packed lunches are soon to follow. ;D

~ Courtney

Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Day 2 on Rabbit Food

Yesterday started as a good day. I got up super early (8am... which is early for me unless I have class) mostly because I couldn't sleep after my boyfriend left for work, but also because I decided that I wanted to go for a walk (I talked about this is my post yesterday). While I felt super accomplished after getting back home, I was freezing cold. It is still technically winter where I live and I do not enjoy the cold or the wind (which is what my city is famous for...figures). Anyway, while on Pinterest (yes, I know...) I stumbled upon a post talking about the Rabbit Food Pyramid. If you've never heard of it, you can find it here. I've always been a little skeptical about food pyramids as they're not usually very thorough and I've heard lots of research that doesn't support the use of food pyramids/guides.

When I was little, we had a copy of this exact Canada Food Guide on our fridge. I grew up on a limited income so it was very rare for me to ever get all four food groups at any given meal (I was also a little brat who hated any kind of vegetable except for carrots which the rest of my family was always sick of).

So anyway, I've seen the Rabbit Food Pyramid on Pinterest before but I never actually looked at it because of these reasons. For some reason though, yesterday I decided to click on the blog and read about it. And I was actually pretty mad at myself after. It seems so simple and easy and I'm kind of mad that I never took the time to look at it before. And for once, it all seems like food that I will actually eat! After reading about it and making my own printouts to put in my binder of the portion sizes and different kinds of food that it talks about, I went straight to the grocery store to get started. I bought all my food and then another good thing happened. I ended up having over 50,000 PC points, so I got $50 off all my groceries! As a broke, 'starving' college student, it just about made me cry.

Yesterday went well. I stuck to all the servings for each meal and all the proper portion sizes and I was actually really impressed that I felt full all day! The only thing I do different is that I split my snack portion into two. So instead of having all that's portioned for my snack at once, I split it between breakfast and lunch, and lunch and supper. I made it to day 2! Which is somewhat of an accomplishment for me, as I'm really bad for getting sidetracked or getting super hungry and then just eating whatever I feel like (I haven't been doing that since I began trying to lose weight, but I feel like this is really going to help me).

Today I felt like I had so much energy too! I woke up early again, by myself (HUGE accomplishment), and actually ate breakfast! I'm not going to lie, I hated the plain Greek yogurt, but I still ate it and have now resolved to find the healthiest NONplain Greek yogurt out there. And then, I brought out my guitar from the back recesses of closet where it's been forced to reside since I convinced myself that I cannot play guitar. Well guess what guitar, I have resolved to learn to play you again! I was surprised with how much I've actually retained about playing since my guitar probably hasn't left my closet in 2 years. And I don't think I'm as bad as I convinced myself I was! I still can't play any songs, but I've resolved to practice my fingerings and dexterity exercises until I can at least play 'Happy Birthday' or something. That'll be another goal of mine. Along with losing weight, I want to be able to play my boyfriend 'Happy Birthday' on his birthday which isn't until November, so I should have lots of time.

~ Courtney

Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Yes, I'm THAT Girl

You know that one friend you have who is constantly on the computer updating Instagram and pinning on Pinterest?

I'll admit it. I'm that girl. Pinterest has been my life lately. I probably have 50+ boards, half of them secret and dedicated to my dream engagement ring, my dream wedding, and my dream children. Recently though, I've decided to focus my Pinterest perusing the fitness and healthy lifestyle pins to try and keep myself motivated. I do have a habit of getting bored or attending one-too-many night out birthday dinners and then falling off the bandwagon, so this is my way of ensuring that doesn't happen again.

I tried started a plank challenge a few days ago but I could barely hold myself up for 5 seconds, let alone the targeted 20. It was really discouraging and the next few days were spent with aching stomach muscles. I've since realized that maybe I was being a little too ambitious. I have always had a weak core and weak upper body so I figured it was unfair to myself to compare my fitness to how long I can hold a plank. I've decided to start small, with exercising at least, seeing as how incredibly busy I am currently with school. Our second Clinical rotation begins next Monday and I'll be doing that for 8 hours a day, three days a week until the middle of April. Between Clinical three days a week, seven classes stuffed into Thursday and Friday, and all my other assignments and studying I'll have to do, I don't see much time for myself to work out and still have a social life. So I've decided to start with walking. I set up a route around my neighbourhood and attempted it today. It ended up being 3/4 of a mile and took my about 11 minutes to complete.

I'm going to try and update this blog at least 1-2 times a week (hopefully more) with any weight/exercise updates or things that I try that end up working for me.

~ Courtney

Friday, 19 February 2016

Tips & Tricks & Jennifer Lawrence

This post is mostly just going to be a list of different motivational ideas that I've tried and that work for me or just ones that I think are great ideas.

I'm a list-maker. Ever since I was little, I've been making lists for everything; to-do, things-I-want, books-to-read, places-to-travel, etc . . . I get immense satisfaction in crossing things off of my lists. Nothing in the world makes me feel more accomplished than knowing I get to X-out something on my list which is probably why, when I decided to get healthy, I made a list (honestly, I have more like five lists on health and fitness, but whatevs).

I have a goal chart that I made and printed out posted on my closet door. I actually took this idea off of a post on pinterest because it appealed to me so much. I just felt like I could totally keep up with it (and I like the idea of rewarding myself). I also made specific goal dates by which I want to achieve them and even a list of rewards for myself when I do hit my goals. This has been the biggest help for me trying to lose weight and get healthy because I feel so great when I get to cross numbers off of my chart. It actually makes it feel like an achievement and not just a chore.

Another idea I saw on pinterest that I was contemplating trying was the pebbles in two separate jars (lbs lost vs lbs to lose), but my room is actually pretty spatially deprived at the moment (especially of any kind of counter space) and I figured it would eventually just be one more thing I'd have to clean. I do really like the idea though, I'm a very visually motivated individual so I can definitely see the appeal of it.

One other idea I saw, more for trying to make a habit of things, but it was to have 21 numbered sticky notes on your wall and to take one down for each day you abstain from whatever-you-chose until it becomes a habit. Again, I really like the idea, but it seems very temporary to me. I like seeing evidence of my accomplishments and this idea is based more off of what you end up not having (. . . if that makes any sense at all??).

Finally . . .  my biggest motivation of all . . .

Pictures of Jennifer Lawrence!

I'm not going to be unrealistic or creepy and say my goal is to have her body, because it's not. She's three or four inches shorter that me and probably almost 100lbs skinnier, but like I said before, I work best with visualizations and I love her body because it's real (also I just really love that gray dress, and her blue bikini-my fave colour!). She's not stick thin, or super ripped, and she has curves. As a super-curvy girl myself, I've grown up loving my curves. Especially my boobs. If I lost weight, I do not want to look so thin as to look sickly or be comparable to a stick.


Previous Date Goal
     Valentine's Day       240lbs   234.5lbs!

Current Weight   234lbs

Next Date Goal
     My B-day (17/05)   215lbs

A little under 3 months to lose 19lbs. I figure I can safely lose 1.5lbs per week for the next 12 weeks, and then I'll be in pretty good shape for my ultimate goal!

Wish me luck!

~ Courtney