Overwhelmed. Humbled. Relieved.

Those three words are what kept floating through my mind as I read through all of the comments and messages I received. Y’all poured so much love, grace, understanding and encouragement on me.

When will I learn that keeping things in the dark or pretending like everything is okay only makes everything seem so much worse?!

Almost immediately after I hit publish, I felt such a sense of relief.

I wish I had brought all of those thoughts out into the light ages ago!

Darkness leads to festering. Light brings healing.

Thank you for your understanding. Thank you for your gentleness.

My Plan For Eating:

Several months ago, I became frustrated with My Fitness Pal. I felt like I was being punished for eating fruits and vegetables. I’d have to run a mile just to eat a banana worth 105 calories. That just did not compute for me. I mean . . . fruits and vegetables are real food.

I was also struggling with either constantly being hungry or just having the munchies. I figured if I was going to snack a lot I might as well snack on fruits and veggies, so I decided to give Weight Watchers another go. I was also hoping the change might re-motivate and re-energize me. Weight Watchers had revamped their Points Plus program since the last time I was on it and now, almost all fruits and veggies are zero points.

The switch lasted about a month and a half.

The only thing I liked about Weight Watchers was the zero point fruit and veggies . . . everything else just made me appreciate My Fitness Pal.

My Fitness Pal versus Weight Watchers:

~ MFP has the label scanner included within the app itself. WW has a separate app for scanning.

~ MFP has a quick-add tool where you can copy and paste what you had for breakfast/snack/lunch/dinner yesterday onto today. WW does not offer this.

~ MFP has a multi-add tool where you can add as many items as you want to your food diary in one shot without having to switch back and forth between screens. WW does not offer this.

~ MFP has an exercise diary that records calories burned. WW has an activity diary that records activity points earned. Since I wear a heart rate monitor with a calorie count watch I know exactly how many calories I burn. In my opinion, I feel tracking calories burned is more accurate than tracking activity points.

~ MFP is free. WW is not.

My solution for my frustration with MFP was to increase my daily caloric intake. I changed my weight loss goal from Lose 2 lbs. per week to Lose 1 lb. per week. That gave me almost 300 extra calories a day. Now, I have a little more wiggle room to snack on bananas, apples, oranges, strawberries, blueberries, baby carrots, grape tomatoes, cucumbers, etc.

I’ve really struggled mentally with this change because I want the weight to come off. Yesterday! Yet, I need to get it through my thick skull that when I become too hungry because I’m trying to stay under a lower caloric intake, all I really end up doing is overeating because I feel like I’m starving. Does that make sense?

My Plan for Exercise:

The only big change for me over the next few months is I will be running less. The only races I have on my calendar are a possible half-marathon the end of October and a full marathon the end of December. My body needs a break from marathons.

Ok. Enough about all that! How about some pictures?

photo(131)This was somewhere around mile 17 in the marathon this past Sunday. I love getting to mile 17. It means there’s only single digits left!


I was admiring my toenails in this picture and being thankful I still have them. ::snort::

Oh, wait. Did I ever tell y’all about my toenails after the marathon in Peoria? Oh. My. Word. Apparently, you can get blisters underneath your toenails. I know, right? Grooooooossss. They were oozing for days. Yes, oozing. Niiiiiice.

Now, they’re bruised. My man thinks they will eventually fall off. I’m still crossing my fingers hoping I get to keep them.

I’m shaking my head right now. Sometimes I can’t believe the things running makes me say.


Does anyone else get sucked in by the $5 movie bin at Wal-mart? No? Just me?


  1. Corrie_Alexa says:

    I use livestrong to track my workouts and food. I haven’t used the mobile livestrong yet, but I have always found the regular site super easy to use. Oh! And at one point I hit a plateau and my healthy friend said I wasn’t eating enough. It was true. I added some healthy calories to my diet and the pounds started coming off again. Live and learn. lol.

    And not me, but the $5 bin sucks my husband and child right in…and then we have 8 new movies and less money to spend on groceries. I have been known to say “step away from the bin and drop everything you are holding!!!”

  2. I hate that so much. I feel like I’m splurging on a dang banana when I eat one before my runs, but it’s one of the few things that doesn’t bother my stomach before. Or peanut butter…it’s just nuts. That’s something that bothers me about calorie counting. I could eat an oreo or two instead of a banana, and have the same calorie count. Although, I know bananas are better, I still get shocked when I have fruit and see the calorie count afterward.

    I tried WW for a while, but I found for me that it slowed down the weight loss. My leader had trouble explaining the 0 point fruit situation…did yours tell you if there was a limit? That was so confusing for me, and I think that was my down fall with them. I miss the old system SO much. Fruit was 1 or 2 points…didn’t feel as bad!

    • i didn’t go to WW meetings. i used the on-line version. maybe it would have been better if i had gone in person and spoke to someone.

      that is the drawback of calorie counting – seeing items that are the same amount of calories as fresh fruit and veggies.

  3. It makes me feel so much better when I admit that thing that is eating at me. I’m so glad you shared.

    I think your plan is a great one. I lost four pounds in one day from a virus. I think I prefer MFP. 😉

    I hope you don’t lose your toenails!

  4. Loosing your toenails are a right of passage with marathon running. It haven’t earned the right to loose my toenails yet. :-) But you have definately earned it!!!!

    I have really been struggling with being motivated with my eating. I need to get back to the basics. I was reminded recently (by I won’t say who) that I need to include more protein in my diet. I don’t struggle with wanting fruits and veggies, just the junk that does absolutely nothing for my body. I really like MFP when I stick to it.

    I am starting my 1/2 training plan on Monday. It puts me being ready on Sept. 15th and my race isn’t until Oct 27th. I am hoping to slip another in before then and then go for the full in the winter or early next Spring. You have been my inspiration to try a full (at least one time)!!!

    Thanks for sharing your heart, life, and keeping it real!!

    God bless you!!

  5. Have you been reading the articles about long distance running and weight loss? The idea is that if you are not increasing running intensity then your weightloss will stall. They say a better option is circuit/interval training. When I had my first child I ran but was not losing. I joined stroller strides (interval based) and lost the weight. I still do the same thing when I am training for the halves that I have done, I actually gain weight. The stroller strides owner moved and it is no more so I struggle to find interval training that I like (I like to do things with my kids and dont like crowded classes). I love running, but for weight loss it is not the cornerstone to my exercise routine.
    For food management I use My Net Diary and like it a lot. I also like using Runkeeper for my runs.
    Thanks for keeping it real! I don’t think it would be a journey if there weren’t a few wrong turns and detours! That’s what I tell myself anyway!

    • i know all the long distance running hasn’t helped. of course, i haven’t been making the best food choices either. i’m hoping that scaling back and adding in speedwork and hill repeats will shake things up a bit.

  6. I started to respond several times yesterday but just couldn’t find the words. The feelings you expressed could have come straight from my mouth so many times. I just wanted you to know you are such an inspiration, not just numbers on a scale. The obvious love within your family. The drive to improve your health. Your sense of humor. You are so much more the numbers on the scale or the size on the tag of you pants.

    The journey will continue, with all its bumps along the way.

  7. Ruthanne, I love your jest for life and your honesty! I wanted to respond to your last post but could not come up the words. Weight loss is a journey and weight maintenance is a life time commitment. You are on the right road to long term success. What you said about light and darkness and how light always brings healing is always the truth. Keep up the good work and stop being so hard on yourself. I think you need to sit back and relax, let the counting of calories burned and calories consumed take a vacation for a little while. Girl, enjoy your healthy foods without guilt. And, maybe it is time to add some variety to your workout routines. I have added 1-2 days of pilates or yoga. This has not only been good for my joints but also for my muscle tone. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket so to speak, mix things up. You also need to stop comparing yourself to the person who you think you should be but to person God wants you to be. You are a role model and no one likes a perfect person anyway. Blessings on your day :)

  8. Good plan. I thought you weren’t eating enough calories.

  9. Ruthanne, I love to read your posts. You almost always have a great point of view and sense of humor that I really enjoy. I have missed more frequent posts from you! Weight-loss is hard and maintaining is hard too. I don’t know if you follow the “Runs for Cookies” blog, but Katie has lost 120 pounds through eating less and walking/running. A while back she talked about the difficulty of losing weight while running marathons, it is really, really hard if not impossible. Shorter runs are more beneficial for weight loss. I agree you are much more than a number on a scale or your pant size. and truly your self-portraits are sheer genius!

  10. The new plan sounds good! Fruit is good for you and you should be able to eat as much as you need!
    Good idea to cut back on the races as well! That should help with the ‘starving’ felling and with keeping all your toenail :)

  11. I am stuck trying to lose a few pounds and I can’t get motivated to do anything about it. I’m going to go lace up those running shoes now in your honor.

  12. Hi Ruthanne! I am so glad to have found your website and that I am able to read your journey — the honesty and struggles that we all have each day – always good to know we arent the only ones struggling!! I just found you in January and emailed you because I felt so many similarities to you and you did answer!! :) …but I haven’t really made any progress… no matter what I change or try my weight is not budging at all… I get so frustrated with this journey and am just happy to have you as a good influence to look toward and help me to keep trying! Thank you and stay steady, the weight will come off as you have already had such success! Keep the faith and thanks again!

  13. Just now catching up on some blog reading. Wanted to encourage you with the reminder that far more important than numbers on a scale is how you look and feel–especially since water weight varies and muscle weighs more than fat. I can attest to the fact that you definitely look healthy. My freebie suggestion is to find a fave healthy fat snack for when you’ve got the munchies. It is very satisfying and doesn’t promote weight gain like even healthy carbs do.