Wednesday, October 31, 2012

{Happy Halloween}

Trick or…Workout
by Brianne

Halloween starts the first of the holidays that I am determined to survive this year. I can recall last Halloween like it was yesterday. Every holiday has a food associated to it that I recognize I will never feel the same about ever again.

Happy Halloween…I overdose on Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Not like 2 or 5, but like an entire package. One cup is 105 calories, 6.5 grams of fat and 21 grams of sugar. Doesn’t actually sound that bad….unless you eat 20 of them.

Happy Thanksgiving…oh and how thankful I have been every Thanksgiving for carbohydrates. My moms stuffing, yams drowning in brown sugar and them biscuits from a can. I have used more butter on those pieces of shit….just call me Paula Deen.

Merry Christmas…See’s candy is a big one, but let’s not disregard hella food for 2 if not 3 consecutive days. As. Much. As. Possible.

Happy Friggin New Year. My last suppers usually occurred around New Years. Every year I would wait until New Years day to begin a diet, but only if I didn’t have a party to go to or if it fell on a Monday. Otherwise January 2nd or 3rd or 4th…you get it.

Last year and every year before that for at least 5 years, the holidays equaled shopping and food. How can anyone argue with how fabulous that sounds? Well, I believe that every year for at least the last 5 years, I have gained at least 15 pounds from October to January. And that’s just 3 months out of the year…let’s not forget those Reese’s Easter egg shaped cups that weigh like a full pound, my birthday which I usually dread and hope to suppress my dread with food, everyone else’s birthdays, Valentine’s Day, oh and Monday-Sunday. It’s been many years of bad food, a bad attitude about food and no…I mean ZERO fitness. No friggin wonder I struggle with my weight.

This year, the holidays WILL be different.

For the holidays this year, it is important that I plan ahead to ensure success. I will be continuously involved in a Shakeology Challenge with my trainer, John Hebison. This keeps me extremely focused on my food and fitness. I log my food and fitness every day within the group challenge. The key factor for success on my journey right now is accountability. I am not yet at a place where I just skip around chasing butterflies. This shit is still hard and I miss the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups so I recognize I need support and constant mindfulness. I am not “fixed”. This is a process. To get through the holidays, I will also make sure I eat before I go to the parties and when there, I will watch my portions and options. If asked to bring something, it will be something I can eat. Veggie trays, fruit salads etc. I will keep alcohol to a minimum, as I would rather eat my calories than drink them. And as I don’t plan to deprive myself completely, fitness is essential. I will have treats. I am not dying. I am living. There will be treats. Shit. It is my goal to workout every single day from today until December 31. I am sure it will go far past that, but there will be fitness or some kind every single day.

Shout outs:

Nooch…30 days baby! You are an athlete. A strong woman. A determined Canepa. Make it simple. Show us how it’s done. You’re my hero. Always will be. YOU GOTTA WANT IT TO WIN IT.

J-Heb…We bringing sexy back.

Holiday Season…you sneaky asshole…I am so over you.


To anyone who struggles like me through the holidays…the time is now. Don’t wait for January 1 (or 2). Start now. Watch your portions and make good choices. Don’t make excuses.

Avoid the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup isle of your local supermarket.  

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


We are excited to announce that Diets in Review, an online resource to EVERY diet and fitness program under the sun has published our story. We were contacted by DIR after our very good friend and former Biggest Loser, Courtney Crozier gave them our information. Thank you, Courtney for believing in us and being a part of our journey. We believe that this struggle…the weight loss struggle is one of the hardest on Earth. Food is an addiction for many people who seek a change that feels near impossible to reach. And sedentary lifestyles are becoming easier and easier as we have more and more technology at our fingertips and everywhere we go. We are proud of how far we have come and hope that with spreading the news that it is possible, someone…anyone may see their worth and fight, fight for their lives.

There were many conversations had. Several text messages sent. Lot’s of thought and anticipation, but in all times we spoke about starting this journey, we never once thought about the people we would meet along the way and definitely never thought that we could ever come close to inspiring someone else. Us? The two overweight sisters. Who knew?

We never thought we would have met the trainers and staff from the Biggest Loser Resort. We never discussed how we would become life long friends with Kelly from Idaho, Heather Insac, Meg from AZ, Keith the Jersey Firefighter, Amanda from Maine and Haley the Doctor. In all our planning, we never thought we would reflect back on our journey and realize that we have people we don’t even know supporting us and cheering us on. We never thought about how our journey would bring us closer to our family and amazingly brilliant cousins, Meghan, Kelly and Kasey. Starting our journey, we didn’t think about returning home and continuing our work with two of the most invested, talented personal trainers, Michael Friedman and John Hebison.  Friends that we haven’t spoken to since grammar school and high school are now part of our inspiration. We never thought about how we would continue group workouts and enrich our lives with our spin class and boot camp friends. Messages from people we don’t even know seeking inspiration to start for themselves and finding it in our words. We definitely never thought we would be friends with actual Biggest Loser contestants…Courtney Crozier, Sione Fa, Mike Messina, Tara Costa, Arthur Wornum and Sarah Nitta, just to name a few. They are the reason we chose the Biggest Loser Resort and seeing their courage and tenacity in person changed us forever. We never thought about how starting our journeys would create an entirely new world for us. But what a world it is and how lucky we are.

We believe that our success, the fire that drives us every single day are the people that empower us along our way.

Our message is simple, INSPIRE to be INSPIRED. This journey is not easy and hard days will continue, but it is with the strength and inspiration we have gained from the people in our lives that we find it in ourselves to continue. If at the end of all of this, should there be an end, we manage to inspire one person to believe in themselves and the brilliance that is life, it will have been worth every second. There are lots of blogs, amazing stories of weight loss success and lives that have been changed forever. This is our story. Our blog. And our lives have been changed because of it. Thank you for reading, for supporting and for being a part of the greatest journey of our lives.

We love you and this fit life more than bread and butter.

-Brianne and Cara 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Inspire to be Inspired.

by Cara

I am surrounded by inspiration. I have this amazing family. Truly loving and encouraging friends. And complete strangers rooting me on. My accoutability has been this blog. But with it I am truly encouraged and inspired by my sister Brianne. She is changing her life so much I feel so lucky to be on this journey with her. This journey we are on is never ending. I will be enjoying fruits and veggies and "healthy" options the rest of my life. And I have a new found addiction to running half marathons (a full will happen in there somewhere) and I really really like to sweat. What a difference from where I was a year ago.

Today is my 31st birthday.

One year ago, my husband and I had set out to a nice date night. Our first stop was a surprise trip to See Jane Run, a women's athletic store on 24th Street. See the last 6 birthdays I have been saying that I want to run a half marathon. Not once had I met that goal, and each year the birthday would pass and I would stay the same and I was be getting bigger and less motivated. Last year, as I was hitting a big year, Ryan took me to the athletic store and told me to pick out some running shoes. There were also clothes that fit my size 22 body. That same night I had a surprise party with my family and my closest friends. It was there that Ryan also gave me the gift that truly has changed me... a two week stay at the Biggest Loser Resort at Fitness Ridge Malibu. Ryan wrote in the card that he wanted to support me in all of my goals and that as I was moving to a milestone birthday he wanted to make sure I did it right. 

Last year on my birthday I weighed 280 lbs. I am not happy about that. I was struggling to play with my kids, I struggled to find clothes and I was struggling to feel the happiness I always have on the inside on the outside. But truth is I was happy. It wasn't until I recently saw pictures from our trip to the Resort that I realized something I didn't know. That whole time....I didn't know I was FAT. I just didn't know, I didn't see it. Honestly, I was blind to it. 

Over the last year, I have shared my goals. My weekly goals, my calorie intake goals, my fitness goals, half marathon finishes. These are major. The number on the scale is important to me, I don't make it my primary goal, but watching that number go down makes me feel GREAT. 

Four weeks ago I set the goal that by today, my 31st birthday, I would be in ONEderland. ONEderland is when there is a 1 infront of your weight. I think the last time I remember having a 1 was in 2000, I remember weighing 193 when I first met Ryan at San Jose State.  Today, I weighed in at 197.6. WHAT?????

I only have 17.6 pounds to go to reach my ULTIMATE weight loss goal of 100 lbs. See setting goals that are achievable is all part of the process. And once I meet that goal I set the next one and then the next. To keep myself on track and on the journey I must have a goal that I am working toward. It will not always be a number on the scale, but there will always be a goal. 

To hold myself accountable here are my next goals:
-100 lb. loss by December 10, 2012 (one year anniversary)
-U.S. Half Marathon November 4, 2012
-Spartan Sprint at BLR Malibu December 2, 2012 
-Find a new SPIN class to take once a week
-INSPIRE others by sharing my story and my new found LOVE for health and fitness

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

{The 101}

by Betty

For those of you that live in the Bay, you know Highway 101 well, or as Cara would say The 101. Hwy 101 is a pain in the ass. It’s busy, uneven, crazy and causes more heartburn than buffalo wing sauce and red wine. However, The 101 is also the path of least resistance. It is direct and the majority of my outings involve using this corridor. I would rather sit in traffic on The 101 than go all the way around on 280 (the more scenic, less trafficy route). I use this analogy of this highway because my weight loss journey thus far is similar to The 101. I want to be on the most direct route, however there is traffic; it is uneven and even though now there is less buffalo wing sauce and red wine, there is heartburn. There are accidents, road rage and lots of fuel used. Additionally, I compare my journey to The 101 is because I HAVE LOST 101 POUNDS.

Yes, this is my 100 pound post and I have mixed emotions.

I never started this journey thinking a 100 pound loss would even be possible let alone 100 pounds in 10 months. No matter how well I am doing, doubt is at the forefront. To reach a goal like this blows me away. 101 pounds. Ca-ra-azy.

I have been holding onto this 101 pound lost knowledge for a couple days and didn’t tell many people right away. John, my trainer knew right away (because I see his damn face every single day), but I thought when I reached 100 pounds, I would jump up and down and go by a BMW or something. Yea no. Instead I doubt. I look in the mirror and I still see someone who has not completely figured this out. I have a long way to go and my relationship with food is still broken. I still want to use food to cope with my emotions and even though, I don’t use the way I used to, I still use it. I am still saddened by what I did to myself and the fact that I am celebrating 101 pounds off my body is embarrassing. I have managed to change my entire life in less than a year…physically, but mentally, I still struggle. I still have doubt, insecurity, fear and shame. Forgiving myself seems near impossible. I know…101 pounds shut up, right?! It’s so awesome and I feel so proud, but in the same breath I can’t seem to find a smile. Instead anxiety, a couple angry tears and uneven traffic find their way to the surface.

Cara and I write this blog to hold ourselves accountable and inspire others the way we have been inspired. I try to keep my posts positive and encouraging, but this is life…real life and it isn’t like the effin Sound of Music. (Well, I guess it is, but instead of singing and smiles, it’s boot camps and hiking). Cara and I have both just reached huge goals on this journey and will be giving Phat Chances a little face lift as well as the Phat Chance Facebook fan page we started. The motivation behind telling our story is simple…inspire to be inspired. Whether 1 person follows or 100, we are humbled by this journey and feel so fortunate to be able to share. With that said, I would be doing a disservice to anyone who reads it if I didn’t tell my truth.

Every journey is different as is every struggle, but what they all have in common is the ability to pick yourself up and remember why you started, why it even matters and what you need to do to make the changes necessary to be successful.

These 101 pounds will not go uncelebrated and I am profoundly proud of myself for having come this far. Every bucket of sweat, every portioned effin plate of unsalted, ranchless food, every clothing size decrease, and every person that supports me has all been so worth it. I am changed for the better because of it. There is more work to do. There will always be work to do.

Shout outs:
Not even sure where or how to begin. I have never felt more love than I have since I started this journey and for the people who have been there all along, I was just so closed off I never saw it. To the new people, you have enriched this journey beyond words and I will be forever grateful.

I dedicate this song the people in my life that love me as I learn to love myself…thank you.
Cara Marie…Whoa. We had a Phat Chance in hell to do this right. Thank you for never giving up on me.

To me: You may never be a saint, you swear a lot and have more issues than People Magazine, but you know who you are and what you want. Do not ever allow yourself or anyone or anything to stand in your way. Continue to fight for your life, for what is right and for the people that stand beside you and believe in you when you don’t believe in yourself. I give you my word that this life is worth it. You are worth it. 101 pounds…so badass. Learn that forgiveness will release you from all the guilt and shame and do whatever it takes to get to a peaceful place. With a little more work, you will be one of the greatest people you know. And you know some really freakin great people.

Take The 101. It may not be best ride, but it will get you there.