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Celebrating Our Weight Loss Journeys – Do The Slender

1175659_10201206136427476_1515660317_nJust four months ago this bariatric fitness guru was in Phoenix with some fellow Weight Loss Surgery Patients at the Second Annual Your Weight Matters Convention put on by the Obesity Action Coalition. We were getting ready to start the Walk from Obesity put on by the ASMBS and I was on a scooter because I wasn’t allowed to exercise after just having my fourth round of reconstructive plastic surgery.

It had become a tradition for me to throw my hands in the air in pictures. People ask me how it started; it’s really a simple thing. As I started getting involved in the Weight Loss community by means of social media I saw that lots of folks posted their successes and achievements and I wanted a way to cheer them on. So, I started posting this symbol – \O/ –DssButton2FB2-150x150

You might notice that the logo for Desperately Seeking Slender includes a little stick figure throwing their arms in the air in this manner.  It was my way of saying…

“Yay! Go you! You’re doing a great job!”

Soon I started taking photos in the same pose as that little stick figure and let’s be honest, they haven’t all been flattering. But they were all fun, and they were my way of celebrating not only my weight loss journey but that of my blog readers.

You’ll often seem me throw that \O/ behind a comment on a post where I want to celebrate someone’s success, cheer them on and give them a “Way to go.” – It’s like a virtual cheer, a Pandora high-five. Every once in a while if I’m really feeling the need to cheer you’ll even see me throw some pom poms up there and the symbol looks like this @\O/@

Back in August at the OAC Convention I had just had a brachioplasty and my arms got sore very easily. Knowing this, one of the more predominant bloggers in the WLS community looked over at me and asked “Do you need us to do the Slender for you?” The Slender! She called it the Slender, and in that moment, I was so excited. “The Slender,” I have no idea why someone giving it a name felt like such an accomplishment to me but it did. It validated it for me in a new way; it made it something that was a recognized aspect of something I have worked hard to bring to the community.

The Slender; is something that motivates the heck out of me. Every time I get my fellow obesity fighters to throw their hands up in the air I feel that passion in me to help others with their weight loss journeys burning inside me.

It’s Motivational Monday and I thought I’d share with you something that motivates me. Here are a few great shots of some Slender Seekers doing the Slender. Thank you all for motivating me to motivate you.

If you’re not featured in the above photos, it doesn’t mean I don’t love you. I just means I don’t have a good shot of you doing the Slender. We can fix that! Feel free to throw your hands in the air and have someone snap a photo and post it on the Desperately Seeking Slender Facebook Page so that I can add it to my collection.

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Pandora Williams author of Desperately Seeking Slender is a  Cooper Approved Wellness Coach Trained in Weight Management Strategies and a Motivational Speaker studying to become a Certified Personal Trainer.

The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) is the ONLY non-profit organization whose sole focus is representing individuals affected by obesity. If you are affected by obesity or care for individuals affected, I ask that you join the OAC today and help us strengthen our voice. Together we DO make a difference.

I am a proud Member, Trained Advocate and Supporter of the OAC

 

Giving Thanks – 7 Weeks to the Tinker Bell Half Marathon

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It’s the end of November and as the first of December approaches this weekend, Dawn (The winner of the “How do YOU celebrate success” contest that I held on my blog back in June of this year) and I are just 7 short weeks away from accomplishing something that just three short years ago I never thought I would even consider doing.

I sat out with a goal this year to run a 5K, a 10K and a Half Marathon. I’ve done all three of those things, in fact, running my first half marathon was what inspired me to put together the contest on my site and find the sponsorship to take Dawn with me to the Tinker Bell Half Marathon that we are running at the beginning of 2014.

I’ve been on the bench a lot the last few weeks due to a couple of physical and emotional issues. But this week I’m coming back in, going to hit the training schedule just as it is set up which means that tomorrow is a 10 mile run for me. I am still splitting my runs up between the treadmill and the elliptical and that won’t be changing for me until next week, but I will get those 10 miles.  My goal is to do 7 miles on the treadmill and 3 miles on the elliptical.

Next week’s schedule is an easier one: we have two 5 mile days, two 4 mile days and one 2 mile day, and that will be the first week that I push to make sure I get all of my run time in on the treadmill or on the pavement.

I’m also hoping that next week’s runs get me outdoors a little bit and I plan to add a little extra walking in to make that happen if need be. I’ve been doing indoor runs since I hit the bench and truthfully, I never get the emotional charge or the freeing feeling that I usually get out of my runs when I run indoors.

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Running has been a missing part of my life for the last few weeks as I have been dealing with a bit of a scare in regards to one of my breast implants, and my fear of escalating a problem made me decide to stop jostling things around for a bit.  But I’m starting to find some ways to work around that by increasing the support my girls have when I exercise in the form of wearing three bras. Uncomfortable? A little, but if it gives me the confidence I need that I won’t be making the situation any worse until I can get back to Dallas and Dr. Yaker can address it AND still be able to adhere to my training schedule and complete this third half marathon, then I can deal with a little bit of discomfort.

Since I got home from my recent trip and had to spend some time on the bench I have realized once again how much my mood alters when I don’t get my exercise and my running time in and how much better I feel when I do. Just three days in the gym last week as opposed to the no gym time the two weeks before made me feel like I’d taken a round of anti-anxiety medication. Forget the Ativan, just get in the gym.

It’s a little strange, if you look at the archives of my blog you will see a little bit of a pattern. October and November always seem to be rather quiet months for me, it is a time of year that I tend to take a step back and reflect – I might just start making it a tradition, a month of reflection and self-awareness from the anniversary of my bariatric surgery on October 19th through Thanksgiving.

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As tomorrow wraps up week 13 of the #20Week2Tink Training Schedule that Dawn and I have been working on, I am thankful for the opportunity to do this. I’m thankful for the ability to run and I am thankful to the sponsors that made this all happen for Dawn. Kay’s Naturals, Celebrate Vitamins and Pace Setter Athletic – Thank you for empowering me to empower someone else to do something so amazing by sponsoring the “How do you Celebrate Success” contest – and thank you to Ameriwell Bariatrics, who came in and put up some of the sponsorship money I wasn’t able to get back in June to help fund my trip to Disneyland for this adventure and of course an extra special thanks to Pace Setter for always making sure there have been good shoes on my feet this year. Together this year these four companies have made Team Seeking Slender a possibility, and I am extremely grateful.

As I sit here tonight eating a plate of Thanksgiving leftovers I find myself smiling as I think of the things in life I am most grateful for. I am grateful that I can exercise and run. I am grateful that the people who love and care for me understand how important those two things are to my health and wellness. I’m grateful that I have so many friends who care so much about me, and I am grateful for where my life has gone over the course of the last three years.

And last but certainly not least, I am grateful to each and every one of you that read my blog, and follow my journey through social media networks. Each one of you represents the fact that my desire to inspire, motivate and encourage others in their weight loss journeys through fitness, nutrition and wellness is coming to fruition and for that, you each have my undying love and gratitude.

Happy Holidays Slender Seekers. I hope each and every one of you continues to find Desperately Seeking Slender to be a beacon of light on your path to a happy healthy lifestyle; it is what I wish for you all this holiday.

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Pandora Williams author of Desperately Seeking Slender is a  Cooper Approved Wellness Coach Trained in Weight Management Strategies and Motivational Speaker studying to become a Certified Personal Trainer.

Slender Seekers Gold Team Sponsors:

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Kay’s Naturals
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Slender Seekers Silver Team Sponsors:

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Team Slender and The #20Week2Tink Training Program was made possible by:

The “How Do YOU Celebrate Success” contest sponsors:

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Author: Pandora Williams

Author of Desperately Seeking Slender

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BariLife has decided to send me back to Paris to represent the WLS Community as I attempt to find my love of running again.
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