Fat Girl Wearing Thin

Life beyond the loss.

   Dec 31

Final Farewell to Moving Mountains 2011

Was this the longest challenge in the history of challenges? Too funny, because I have never even been a challenge-girl in general. They’ve always felt too restrictive and since I’m so free-spirited (ha) I never imagined I’d join a challenge, much less host one for an entire year.


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But Moving Mountains was different.  Heck, all of my challenges are kind of different.  You rarely see them with rules that are set in stone.  I happen to like some wiggle room to move around in.  This challenge was originally intended to allow participants the opportunity to work on one specific thing over a long period of time, or change things up and try something new and different once a month, while coming back to my blog on the 7th to post a progress report of how their goal was coming along.  Since New Year’s Resolutions tend to fade after the first few weeks of a new year I figured, ‘Why not make this available all year long?’  So, that’s what I did.  

Actually, I was honored to host this challenge.  There were faithful readers who contributed a goal almost every single month and it was always exciting to connect with them as they worked through struggles, plateaus, and ultimately for many – successes!  It was just as exciting building relationships with newcomers throughout the year as they dedicated a month or two to working on a specific goal. 

Whether you visited one time or left your goal every month of the year – thank you; while I hope it allowed you to get one step closer to realizing what you can accomplish in a month, six months, or all twelve, what this challenge was really about was allowing yourself to begin.  So often we have goals in mind that we don’t even bother attempting because something always seems to get in the way.  If nothing else, this challenge has taught us that It’s never too late to start a new habit. Each one of you reinforced that this year. 

My final goal for this last month of the year was to continue going to my yoga class despite the fact that I have a very difficult time getting my rear in gear when it gets dark outside.  I wanted to keep my commitments to attending yoga at least twice a week.  I was very mindful of this goal, especially since I’d posted it for everyone to see (and knew that I’d have to write about it here, today).  While I did not make every single class that I wanted to, it wasn’t because of the weather or because of laziness; I had a couple of days when I just didn’t feel well.  Technically, I didn’t fully succeed, however I only missed two days.  I’m pretty happy with that. 



…and now, one last time:  How Did You Do?


Tim, who has left a goal here almost every month this year, didn’t let December dwindle by without pushing towards another goal to round off his rock-star year:

My goal for next month is to focus on weights and upper body strength. I rarely include them into my routine but now I’m so close to my weight loss goal, I need to focus on toning more.

Tim has worked so hard this year and I’m looking forward to reading his final update.


Laura has been very diligent in leaving her goals with me every month and is always very focused on what she wants to work on.  Here’s what she left for December:

My goal is to maintain healthy eating habits but, more importantly, maintain a realistic and healthy attitude no matter HOW I eat!

What a great goal for a maintainer.  This is one that I should always concentrate on, myself.  I hope you had a successful month, Laura!


Teresa decided to contribute a very precise goal for the month – one that I greatly admire, considering that December can be filled with many temptations, as we all know.  Here is what she wrote:

For December, I have an actual diet goal. I want to diet!!! I know I can lose 5-10 pounds before 2012. So, that’s my goal.

I hope you had a great month, Teresa.  Looking forward to reading your update!


Karen worked hard on her goals during the month of November.  The only one she wasn’t able to achieve was her desire to attend yoga, but that was by circumstance.  Even though she didn’t officially leave a goal for December, I know that she wanted to try and find a new place to practice; here’s to hoping she found one that she enjoys!


Michele has been so faithful in leaving both physically and emotionally healthy goals this whole year.  Here is what she decided to work on during December:

1. Continue getting to the gym three times per week.
2. Focus on staying on schedule — I have a major event coming up in February that requires major preparation. It’s crunch time.
3. Take some time each day to reflect on my personal development progress and on the progress of those around me. Those two things bring me great joy!

I hope December brought you much success and joy, Michele.  Looking forward to reading your last update!


Cindy was one of those readers who popped in like a breath of fresh air.  She had specific goals in mind, and despite some obstacles along the way she persevered.  She also left some quality goals for December:

I am determined to reach my goal of 80lbs lost for the year, so my goal in December, again, is to now lose 3 and 7/10ths of a lb. by 1/1/12.

Okay, Cindy.  Don’t keep us waiting any longer – How did you do??


Lynn has been a warrior all year long.  She is very dedicated to the goals she decides to share here every month, and if you’ve been reading them then you know how hard she can push that tiny yet strong body of hers!  I was glad to see that for the month of December, she had some exciting, less structured goals to focus on:

Dec…well, this month I get married and will be spending 2+ weeks at Lake Tahoe. So, I know that I will have less opportunity to stick with a strict schedule. We have people dropping by our cabin so I can’t guarantee much. But, I’m going to do the best I can and take this time to learn to let things happen without freaking out. (Is that a goal?) I’ll be taking Insanity with me, skiing and hiking…enjoying nature and the company of friends and family.

Congratulations to Lynn and her new husband.  I can’t wait to read about this final goal for the year.  I hope everything went beautifully!


Jill was another one of those readers who flew into this challenge, grabbed it and showed it who was boss!  She had successes that were amazing to read.  The most admirable thing though, was her attitude.  If something didn’t go according to plan she didn’t let it get her down, but instead kept right on trying.  Here was her goal for December:

For December I am going to maintain my tracking ( and try and stay within my WW points) I am also going to look for a cooking class for January or February. I wish I had a better report- but it is what it is!
I LOVED reading everyone’s updates!!!!!

Thank you Jill, for your participation this year and for being a wonderful addition to this Challenge.  Can’t wait to read your update!


Hanlie is always very mindful about the things that she wants to do.  She is a great participant!  Here’s her goal for December:

I did visit the pool quite a few times. For now that is where my best exercise is done and I will continue through December.

I hope you enjoyed your pool time this month, Hanlie.  Looking forward to reading your final update!


Connie always has fantastic goals in mind whenever she comes to this challenge.  She left this one for December:

My goal for December is to not gain any weight!! So often I get off course during this time of the year and I hope I can do better at controlling it this year. So far so good. I sometimes find it overwhelming to think about it so much but if I don’t then I tend to go crazy with food. Wish me luck.

I’ve been thinking about you this month, Connie.  I hope you felt at peace this month and am looking forward to your final update!



Thanks again to everyone who trusted me as their Goalkeeper and congratulations to all of you for a great year!


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  1. Hanlie says:

    I have to confess, I failed spectacularly at this challenge! My goals were almost entirely exercise based, yet this is the year I regressed more physically than any other year. I own that and I will reverse that in 2012.

    Thank you for hosting this challenge, Ellen. All the best for 2012!

  2. Glad I could be a part of some of these this year, Ellen, and thanks for hosting! Good luck in 2012!

  3. auntiekim says:

    Happy New Year to you and all your readers

  4. Happy New Year, Ellen! 2012, here we come!!!

  5. Has it really been an entire year? WOW!!! Time does fly when you’re associating with such awesome people like you!!!

  6. teresa says:

    I think I stayed the same and that’s a-okay, considering the way the month has gone…
    I’ve loved this challenge as I do not often participate or appreciate challenges!
    Ellen, you are the best!

    • Ellen says:

      tree, I’m just thrilled that you decided to join. It’s always nice having your positive attitude around here. It just makes things better. Thanks for being so supportive in 2011. XOXO

  7. Tim says:

    Wow, I can’t believe how long it’s been going for!

    I’ve worked a lot more on my upperbody in December. I’ve used more weights and also pushed myself a lot on the rowing machine which i’m sure will help improve the strength in my arms and upperbody.

    My next challenge will be to keep working hard in 2012 :)

    Thanks for being a great host!

    • Ellen says:

      and you will do GREAT things this year, Tim. Just reading about your steps challenge for the first time again is enough to get me motivated to do so many things. It’s empowering to see where you started and where you are now, and it’s clear that you have no intention of slowing down any time soon!

  8. Cindy says:

    Hi Ellen. The weekend got the better of me and I hadn’t checked in to see the follow-up post for the month. Unfortunately, I didn’t meet my goal – I’m actually up three pounds. Not great at all, but I can live with it and I’m determined to move forward.

    I started reading your blog sometime early last spring and am so very happy I found it. You’ve helped me so much this year! I wish I had started participating in the MM challenge earlier, because I do think it made a difference in keeping me from gaining a crazy amount of weight over the holidays, which usually happens. I actually think I ended up coming out a bit ahead overall since the challenge in October and that is a very good thing.

    I’ll be participating in the Hate Loss Challenge. Thank you for doing this! I do think it is the issue that goes to the core of why I have difficulty with weight gain and management. No one has ever helped me think through these issues.

    Wishing you a wonderful and blessed year in 2012. Happy New Year!


  9. Sorry I’m so late on this – but I have to say that I feel like I’ve had an eating revelation. It’s time for me to truly learn how to eat when hungry and stop when full. I can’t say that I accomplished my goal in December, but I think I’m finally realizing what my relationship with food is and what I need to do to have a truly healthy relationship with food. I don’t think it’ll be easy or fast, but I think knowing what the problem IS is the first step. I can’t wait to start and continue!

    Love the blog redesign! Happy New Year!

  10. Jill says:

    I am happy to report that I did track “most” of the month. Because of this I am happy to report that I actually maintained my weight for the first time ever over the holidays! I have 5 pounds left to lose of my overall “Stubborn 10” and will have then lost a total of 85 pounds! Now the bad news… I did not find a cooking class- I didn’t even do 1 little thing to look into it. :( It is still in my head and has not been forgotten about. Thank you Ellen for continuing to inspire and support me!!! Happy New Year! xoxox

  11. Happy New Year Ellen and all of your readers! Just wanted to let you know that the wedding went beautifully although there was NO snow in Tahoe (well, a little man-made stuff but not what was expected). I kept my cool, enjoyed my family (old and new) and had a fantastic 14 days in a mountain cabin. The hiking and scenery was wonderful. A wonderful taste of what life will be like after THIS November when we hit the road permanently in the RV!!

    Congrats on your accomplishments and peace and success for all of your future goals!

    • Ellen says:

      From the photos I saw, I was pretty confident that the wedding went off without a hitch. It looked SO romantic and simply beautiful. Please tell me that you are going to continue blogging when you hit the road. I’d love to see where you’re going and what you’re doing – and see when you pass by my way! (hint-hint)

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