Small challenges can yield large results...

The view of a wall mural & bronze statue from my 4th floor walkway
I was contacted by MeYouHealth a few weeks ago and asked if I wanted to participate in a week of health blogger challenges!  Since I do love a challenge, I didn't hesitate to say 'yes' and went off to check out their website.  I am soooo glad I did as they sponsor a Daily Challenge (you can link to it through Facebook, too) that offers simple, wonderfully thoughtful challenges in many areas of everyday life.  In their own words, "The Daily Challenge promotes everyday well-being by encouraging small actions and fostering the social ties that drive meaningful change."  Pretty darn cool. (Those last three are my words! lol)

Today is my official challenge day and I've already completed it and loved every moment of my challenge which was to:

"Admire a piece of art."

How to do it
As you pass that sculpture in the center of town or walk by the painting in the coffee shop for the umpteenth time, stop for a moment and take a good look at it. Admire the piece of art and think about what the artist was trying to convey. What emotions or memories does the work of art evoke in you? Keep your eyes open for more sculptures, paintings, and other pieces of art you can pause to appreciate today.

Why it matters
As we hurry our way through life, it's important to stop and smell the roses, so to speak. The ability to appreciate and be moved by art is a uniquely human trait, and something we often take for granted. Thinking about art exercises the right side of the brain, which helps us understand large concepts and process multiple ideas at once. Viewing art also has been shown to have a positive effect on emotions and reduce anxiety.
Robert Ferrandini's artwork on display
I'm very fortunate to work in a beautiful office complex where the common areas have commissioned art work of different genres.  I gaze down at two of them from my fourth floor walkway but - perhaps once in five years - never take the time to stop just a moment and admire the beauty of them.  Until this morning.

This wall landscape is by Robert Ferrandini and the title includes a hint of what the artist is hoping to evoke from someone looking at the painting... he wants us to see "the untold story of epic dimensions". 
Aren't we all unfinished pieces of artwork?  Don't we all have "untold stories of epic dimensions" within us, waiting for us to see, for others to enjoy? 

I'll pause more often at Ferrandini's mural from now on.  I'll take a breath in the middle of my usually hectic, busy day and remember how blessed I am with health and happiness... with the ability to challenge myself daily and face challenges in my personal and public lives and win them.  Day by day we can make changes in our lives.  They don't have to be huge changes.  Sometime we just need to slow down and admire the beauty around us.

Thank you, MeYouHealth, for reminding me of that!

Here's to our health,

Jan / HealthyLoserGal

First for Women photo shoot

Today I looked in the full length mirror, dressed to the nines in a hot pink tight wrap dress, hiiiigh heels and hose, my hair and makeup done by professionals and I had to smile because I thought to myself "I've got my figure back!".  If I do say so myself, I looked damn good! : )

After 110+ pounds lost, First for Women Magazine contacted me to interview me about my weightloss and how I did it... how I overcame my bad habits and replaced them with healthy ones.  I pretty much answered, "Vtrim!".  I am so thankful to the folks at Vtrim for teaching me new behavior techniques that have led me to the fun day I had today: a photo shoot for the First for Women January or February issue!

The photographer took nearly 1000 photos today... and I only have a few iPhone photos to share, but here they are... one from 7:30am this morning in my kitchen with the hair & makeup gal, Laura, starting my "makeover" and then one of the outfits I wore for the photo session.  The stylist, Alicia, is pinning the pant legs tighter as... get this!... the size 12 slacks she brought with her were too big!  Woohooo!

I dreamed of a day like today... when I would feel like myself again... feel comfortable in my own skin and happy.  Today was a great, fun day.  I'm proud of myself.  Proud of who I am again.  Thank you for sharing this journey with me, friends.  If I can do this - change my life by dreaming, believing, and achieving my goals - you can, too!

Here's to our health!
Jan / Healthy Loser Gal