Hi guys!

I don’t know if any of you are still reading or not (er…not that there’s much to read!) but I just wanted to let you know that I’m in the middle of setting up a new website and will be blogging there from now on!

It will be a broader scope than just health and fitness–although that will DEFINITELY be included! (I’m thinking of doing Body Revolution again!)

Things aren’t quite up and running yet, but will be SOON.

I hope to see you there!

Remember me?

I need your help.

Let’s just say I took roughly 5 months off. Yikes. 

Starting tomorrow I’m going to try to blog every day again. Plus, I’m taking a hip hop dance class and I want to tell you all about it. 

I need to get back in the game.

Beginning Again

Yesterday I counted my calories for the first time in a looooooong time.

Right now I have my calories set to about 1450 per day, but I’ve been going over by a couple hundred. Partly I’m just not being as disciplined as I know I need to be. And partly, it’s just hard to get back into the swing of things. But I’m following the “if you bite it, write it” rule pretty seriously. One of my goals in The Enabler Pact is to count calories, and I’m going to count every single one that passes my lips.

Another of my goals is to exercise three times a week. This one is harder for me, right now. I did yoga with David on Tuesday morning, and I did yoga this morning. That’s it so far. It’s already Thursday and I’ve only exercised 2 out of 5 times! I plan to go to a hip hop cardio class tonight at the gym…my first time stepping foot in the gym since July! That will bring me up to 3 workouts (I specified 5 TIMES per week instead of 5 DAYS per week for a reason. Ideally, I’ll have one solid challenging workout per day, but in the instances where I need to double up, I want each workout to count–as long as they’re truly separate workouts. I think yoga in the morning and hip hop in the evening clearly qualifies). If I get myself to that class tonight, then I have Friday, Saturday, and Sunday to get my remaining two workouts in. I can handle that.

I know I’ve JUST come back to the fold, so I hate to throw some TMI at you right off the bat, but I have my period this week, and it’s making everything exponentially more difficult. I feel even more miserable than usual this cycle. Really emotional, as well as all the unpleasant physical stuff. It is really, really tempting to throw in the towel and promise to try again on Monday. Isn’t it funny how whenever you promise to start again on Monday, that particular Monday never seems to come? Putting things off won’t help me reach my goals. Got to push through.

Here’s what I ate yesterday:

One over easy egg, one piece of whole grain toast with a pat of butter. One cup of black coffee.


One cup (more than pictured) of organic honey o cereal. Not pictured: one tablespoon of honey in my tea.


Lunch was homemade chicken and barley soup, with a bit of grated Parmesan cheese.


After work I had to stop at the grocery store to pick up a few ingredients for dinner, and snacked on this piece of dark chocolate.


Dinner was pancetta, chard, and white bean pot pies. I bought a frozen puff pastry for the lid, because I wasn’t feeling well enough to make my own from scratch. I knew these would be calorie dense because–hello, buttery crust. But WHOA, these are calorie dense. The filling itself would work well as a stew, but even without the crust, this delicious, largely healthy meal packs a lot of calories, stemming almost entirely from the BEANS. Who knew beans were so freaking calorie dense? By no means am I going to stop eating them, but when I removed the crust from the calorie count, the stew alone was still pushing 700 per serving! Yowzer. Still, this was healthy and super, super flavorful. I might play with it to see if I can get the calories down, but even if I can’t, this will be a wonderful occasional cold weather treat. (Remember, I refuse to fear food!).

Not pictured: I also had one 4oz glass of white wine with dinner.


After dinner I had some caramel crunch chocolate with sea salt. I wanted to eat the whole bar (well, I wanted to eat half and give the other half to David) but he wisely pointed out that a little goes a long way. This little bit, about 1/6 of the bar, was the perfect bit of luxurious sweetness needed to appease my hormones!


I was over my calories by 400, putting me at 1850 for the day. Not too bad, really. I’ll take it.

The Enabler Pact

David and I like to joke that we enable each other. Jokes that are more like uncomfortable truths. You know the kind.

We look to each other for validation of our poor choices.

If David complains that he is too tired or cranky or [insert excuse here] to cook and eat the healthy dinner we’ve shopped for and planned, I’m on the phone dialing up delivery before he can even pause for breath. Or if I’m having a terrible day, David is ready with a pint of ice cream and a box of mac and cheese to cheer me up. It’s gotten to the point where these things aren’t even occasional indulgences anymore. We are just full-on making terrible choices and telling each other it’s ok.

It’s not.

We’ve been aware of this pattern for a while now (long enough to try to turn it into a joke, after all) but being aware of a problem is a far cry from solving it.

But before I get into that, I want to take you guys on a quick photo journey.

Once upon a time I was a healthy, thin, active person. My average weight was between 165 and 170 which is the middle of the healthy bracket for my height, at 5’10. I wasn’t fit, by any means, but I was up and moving pretty constantly.

Here’s a picture of David a year or two before we met:

In our hey days we were pretty damn good looking people (horrible photos aside. This is only JUST when digital cameras were becoming a thing. Most of my photos from this time were still prints!)

That’s not how we looked when we met each other, though.

I went through some personal crap, and came out the other side about 40 pounds heavier. Which is where I was when I met David. Not my best. But not really AWFUL, either. I knew I had weight to lose, but I didn’t worry too much about it. I’d gone up a clothes size, but I wasn’t “plus-sized” (yet) so I told myself it was fine. I’d bounce back. But… I didn’t.

When I met him, David was in better shape than I was, but far from his physical peak (former hockey player and cross country runner, he’d put on a few pounds after he stopped those activities while still eating the same amount of food).

We were pudgy, but happy. Happy enough to ignore the unpleasant changes in our bodies. And of course, we had never seen the hotter, slimmer versions of one another. We still liked what we DID see. So nothing to worry about.

This is a picture of us taken about a month after we met. Excuse David’s ridiculous face–I think he was mid-sentence! (I’m only using photos other people have taken of us for this blog post. It’s too easy to get deceptive angles when taking a long-arm photo of yourself. I should know. I’m a pro at that kind of stuff. Since I hated having my picture taken, even then, there aren’t many to choose from! Excuse the poor quality of most of them!) New Year’s Eve–2008:

New Year's Eve 2008

I weighed roughly 208lbs in that picture, perhaps a little less (which is what I weigh right now! Stupid honeymoon weight gain!).

We’d been dating almost two years when we moved to Minnesota. The latter six months had been stressful..and we both put on some more weight. This is us in October of 2009.

I’m probably pushing about 220lbs in this photo, which was taking about a month after we moved. We were unemployed, staying with family, and pretty stressed out and depressed. Although we quickly got jobs and moved down to the cities in an apartment of our own, the weight gain increased…

This photo was taken in the summer of 2010. This is possibly the heaviest we’ve ever been, respectively. I can only guess that I was over 230lbs by quite a bit, but I can’t tell you for sure, because I NEVER weighed myself at this point in time. I was in major, major denial.

Both David and I feel ill when we look at this photo. How they hell did we get here? Although intellectually we know that it was a slow, slow processes that crept up on us because of a steady stream of terrible choices, it really felt like we just woke up one day and were fat. Like, really fat. 

Even seeing these pictures didn’t push us into gear, though. Oh, we dropped a handful of pounds without really trying. A smidge. An ounce or two.

This is a few months later, Thanksgiving of 2010.

For most of 2011 things stagnated. We had made the commitment to eating completely local and organic in 2010 (and are still going strong with that, woo hoo!) but since they make organic local butter and cream, that wasn’t going to help us out too much without some added effort on our part. I started taking a weekly yoga class through work, and David started commuting on his bike, so we slimmed down a bit. A teeny bit. Here’s us in May 2011:

Incidentally, when a relative posted that set of photos on facebook I cried for a week. I HATED the way I looked in them. And that wasn’t even the biggest I’d ever been! Was it enough to really motivate me yet? Well…no.

I didn’t really start to get my act together until March 2012. When I bought Body Revolution and started this blog. And changes started to happen…

June 2012

July 2012

(These two photos taken by the ridiculously talented Kate Sommers of

September 2012

(Wedding photos taken by family and friends. You’d better believe I’ll be sharing the professionals when they come in!)

We have made such great progress, but still have a long way to go. After the wedding, David and I fell off track. We stopped counting calories and eating well. We stopped working out (truth be told, I stopped working out back in July, when pre-wedding stress just totally consumed me). We started making really poor choices all the time, and we started to enable each other to continue making those choices.

Outlook: not good.

We both put on a few pounds. Nothing earth shattering. I weighed 201lbs on my wedding day, and this past Monday I weighed in at 209lbs (after avoiding the scale entirely for a month). The scale is definitely going in the wrong direction. And I started to panic. I mean, really panic. I don’t ever want to go back to where I was at my worst. I am already feeling lethargic and heavy from no exercise, I have less energy, I’m feeling bloated and moody because I’m eating crap all the time. And I know where this gets me. And I so do not want to go there.

I struggled along on my own for a few days, trying to get back into the swing of things. And it was hard. In fact, it was impossible. I was getting nowhere. David and I had been mentioning, in an off-hand, falsely nonchalant way that we wanted to get back into our good habits. So I decided to force us to put our money where our mouths are.

I whipped up The Enabler Pact, showed it to David, and then when we finished laughing, we signed that damn thing and got to work.

The Enabler Pact reads as follows:


WE, Team Van Sant, the undersigned, do hereby pledge to enable the hell out of one another in making healthful, sustainable choices for our bodies and minds, with the goal of increasing the mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing of ourselves, both as individuals, and as a family.

WE vow to uphold that pledge with the following words and actions:

  • Vocal encouragement and celebrations of success. We will be one another’s cheerleaders and biggest supporters in our quest for health. We will be proud of one another. We will honor each other’s requests to be shown this support in ways that are most beneficial to the recipient.
  • We will keep each other accountable. We will share thoughts about our plans and progress to the degree to which we feel comfortable doing so, and will be attentive and compassionate listeners as well. We do this not to nag, or to pass judgment, but because we care deeply about one another and want to be successful.
  • There are no punishments. There is no failure. We aim to make the best choices in the moment, with the long term goal of living a long, active, and healthy life side by side. We wish to focus on ALL aspects of health, not just food and exercise, but mental and emotional health, too. Sometimes, this might require taking a step back, or taking a break. This is not failure. This is reality. We will give ourselves the space to make these choices. We will allow ourselves to indulge. And then, we will let it go and move on.

WE understand that success will manifest differently for each of us. For that reason, we will declare some individual goals, with the knowledge that this is a constant and evolving endeavor, and that these goals are fluid and will most likely change over time.

David’s Goals: 1. Count Calories. 2. Yoga 2x per week. 3. Get 7 hours of sleep per night

Kelly’s Goals:  1. Count Calories. 2. Exercise 5x per week. 3. Get weight down to 175lbs before getting pregnant.

WE enter into this pact freely, knowing that we are bangarang inside and out.

Silly? Absolutely.  Does it work? Too soon to tell. But I have to say, I’m counting all my calories, and devising workout plans–two things I haven’t done in months. And it’s great to know that my husband(!!!) has my back.

I am so ready to rock this.

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Scale went down, but…

I weighed in this morning at 205.2 lbs. I lost 5.6 lbs in less than a week. And I am NOT happy about it.


I’ve got a stomach flu.

If you need me, I’ll be over here. Miserable.


So, sometimes when you get married, you gain weight. 

Ok, probably not universally true. But let’s recap. I haven’t worked out since July. I was eating mostly ok but not great up until my wedding on September 1st, after which I’ve been eating like CRAP. Still no working out.

The morning of my wedding I weighed in at 201 lbs. 

Today? 210.8lbs. 


Not ok. 

I know I need to get back on track, but it seem so HARD for some reason? Why? I know that I can do this! I’ve done it before, and my journey is not over! I still have a long, long way to go! How do you guys get back  in the game after a (bad) slip up? I need advice and encouragement!

Oh, and expect daily posts from me again. I need the community!

The Return!



Wow, I’ve missed you guys!


I’m now officially a married lady, and I have to tell you it is WONDERFUL. I’ll have pictures of the wedding and some recaps soon, but right now I just want to get my feet wet and figure out how to work blogging (and fitness and health!) back into my life!


For the record: my weight on my wedding day was 201 lbs. My current, post-honeymoon weight is 205 lbs. Some wedding pictures have come in already, and while I can acknowledge that I wasn’t at my fittest on that day, I still think I looked gorgeous. I’ve come a long way in body-acceptance over the past few weeks. 


The truth: I haven’t worked out, not once, since July. I’ve gone on some walks and some hikes and things, but have not once hit the gym or scheduled a personal training session. I have not counted calories or eaten mindfully since July. In fact, full disclosure: last night we ordered Chinese take out with nary a vegetable in sight. 


I want to get back on track. 


I have SO much catching up to do! I want to read about how things have been going with all of you, and start to figure out how to let you know what’s going on with me. Mostly, I’m so excited to start moving forward again!



Maintaining weight – no loss, no gain.

Being swallowed whole by my wedding, which is in 26 days. 

Miss you all. Miss working out. Miss normal everyday life. 

Be back soon.

Miss Me?

I’ve missed you guys a lot.

I’ve been avoiding this blog, and your blogs, and all blogs in general over the last couple of weeks while I’ve been aging and reverting to a sedentary life-style and shoving yet another gourmet ice cream cone in my mouth. And while it maybe sounds kind of awesome on your computer screen, I am here to tell you that it has totally sucked.

The last month has sucked. I completely bailed on the wagon and rolled right on into a ditch while the wagon kept on going with out me.

I’ve gained back 2lbs (not the end of the world I know, but damnit, it suuuuuuuuuuucks). I am tired and cranky all the time, and I know, I KNOW, that it’s because I’ve been eating like crap and haven’t worked out in weeks.

Let me try to catch you up on what’s been going on in my absence. On Sunday, July 15th, I turned 30! I am actually kind of jazzed to be entering my 30s. My 20s were kind of a hot mess. I’ve been financially independent since I graduated high school (and pretty much in high school, too), and I’ve always been a hard and responsible worker, but let me tell you–emotionally?–I was an idiot. It’s only in recent years that I feel like I have a handle on who I am and what I want and need. I’m really happy with my life overall, and confident and excited about the direction it’s going. I think my 30s are going to kick ass, frankly.

But no matter what age you are, birthdays can get a bit weird. It’s a yearly milestone, and a good time to check in and see where you’ve come and what you’ve accomplished in the last year. And I was pretty bummed out, because even though I’ve done so much, I’ve also put the breaks on in the last few weeks. And it sucks to know that I’ve been treading water instead of moving forward.

So the personal trainer thing, right? I got a free session when I joined the gym. I went in for it last Thursday. I met with a trainer named Joe (older guy, a bit goofy, but nice enough) and we discussed my goals. I think I may have talked myself up a bit. I mentioned that I’d lost a significant chunk of weight recently on my own, and described Body Revolution to him and the type of food I’d been eating (though I hadn’t been eating it recently…). We were supposed to have a half hour workout session, but fifteen minutes in I had to stop because I nearly vomited. I spent the rest of the session with my head between my knees. Somehow I managed to drive home, despite seeing spots. I went into the bedroom (coolest room in the apartment, thanks to a crappy, barely functioning window ac unit) and spent the next two hours trying not to puke. I didn’t stretch at all, because I didn’t think of it. And I spent the entire week feeling like my quads were going to rip out of my body. I was sore from Body Revolution plenty of times, but I can honestly say I’ve never felt pain like this from working out. Going up or down the stairs was agony, and it honestly made my eyes water. Yesterday was the first time I could walk properly all week. Just in time for my next personal training session.

Yup. My birthday present to myself is purchasing 12 months of personal training sessions. I’m starting off super light, with only 2 sessions per month. I went in today to set it all up. I met with Joe again, and he took all my measurements and put me through a standard fitness test. I met my trainer, Christine, and set up my first real session. Yikes. I am both excited and nervous. This is a huge commitment.


But something had to give. I can’t just backslide and let all my hard work go to waste. I am going to make this happen. This is the life I want to live.

I’ve got to end on an upbeat note, or at least a super, super pretty and minorly hilarious one. The sneak peek of our engagement photo shoot is in, and here it is!


The hilarious part is that this is one of the only “posed” photos we took the entire day, and was also one of the most awkward. The majority of the shoot took place at our local farmers market, and other than making out a lot more than we ever would in public, we typically behaved like ourselves, and almost all of the shots from that part of the day were candids. Then we walked to this nearby little park to get some picnic-y shots.

This is one of the only shots our photographer (who is rad and awesome and I want to make her my friend so much) posed. We were lying on a slight incline, with our heads downhill and our feet uphill. David was supremely uncomfortable, both physically and emotionally. He did NOT want to lie down! He kept sitting up and saying “this is weird, this is weird” and then lying down in the most awkward, stiff, and uncomfortable positions ever. But we finally got him to relax a little bit, and this is the end result! I am SO excited to see more!

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Holiday Havoc


Did anyone else use the holiday as an excuse to totally and completely fuck off for a while?

Yeah. Me too.

I haven’t done jack in weeks.

Well…that’s not entirely true.

I joined a gym! But I’ve only been there exactly once so far. AND I bought new, actual running shoes. My first pair!


But…other than that one time at the gym in my new shoes… I haven’t done anything. And I’ve been eating like CRAP.

As of this morning my weight is at 203.8 lbs. So I haven’t really gained anything. But I definitely haven’t lost anything either, and that’s ridiculous. It’s been almost a month now with no weight loss. What’s my deal?

I think I need to start checking in here every day again. I know it might be tedious to look at pictures of whatever I’m eating all day every day, but I need that accountability!

I didn’t meet my goal of being under 200 lbs for my engagement photos (we had a BLAST, by the way. I can’t wait to see how they turn out!) and my 30th birthday is this Sunday, so it’s unlikely I’ll be under 200lbs then either. And there’s just no excuse for that. I’ve been slacking and I’m not happy about it.

Tonight’s schedule will be really tough, but I’m going to try to hit the gym today after work and still get home in time for David to take the car to class. If I miss the gym I’ll try to jog outside at night. The heat wave has broken at least a little bit lately.

Tomorrow I have a session with a personal trainer! It’s just a free introductory session. As much as I’d love to, I don’t know that I can afford to hire one regularly. But I’m excited! And also really scared and nervous.

This is it, guys. I have to break this cycle. I’m feeling so down lately. But this weight isn’t going to come of by itself. I know I can do this; I just need to kick it into gear!