Friday, July 26, 2013

Setbacks and Successes

So, today was one of those chained-to-the-desk days at work where you're lucky to get a bathroom break.  I managed to get less than 5000 steps today - no, that is not a victory.  My daily goal is 8,000 steps, so you see what I mean about chained-to-the-desk, right?  Oh but it doesn't stop there, nooooo.

When I got home from work, I had planned to do my resistance training that was postponed from yesterday.  Well, what I didn't take into consideration was how long dinner prep was going to take.  Dinner, by the way, turned out awesome, but did indeed take all my time.  I ended up getting in a short one-exercise-per-muscle-group workout after dinner.

While I'm on the subject of failures setbacks, I will also mention I tried on some of the smaller sizes of jeans hanging in my closet only to find I cannot yet wear them comfortably.  Some are altogether too small, while others are "buttonable," but uncomfortably so.

Ok, so I'm not going to wallow in my setbacks, I'm going to find some successes here somewhere....

1) I took the stairs this week - a lot.  Four flights at a time.  I know it doesn't seem like a lot, but at the altitude here, it actually is.  (I see athletes climbing these stairs who are out of breath at the top.)

2) I started parking in a spot at work that's at least twice the distance from where I used to park.

3) I drank more water this week than I did last week - yeah "weak" I know...

That's all I can think of now.  So, how have you been doing this week?  What are your successes?

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Callin' in a Sub

Remember yesterday when I was talking about "busy" days and how to fit in exercise on such days?  Well, guess what I had today?  Yep, you guessed it - a busy day.  Wow, you're pretty smart.

I left work later than usual, had to stop for gas, had to stop for a grocery item I forgot, and my sunglasses broke so I had to find another pair (or suffer severe headache consequences).  By the time I got home, I went straight into cooking dinner and didn't even realize I hadn't worked out until halfway through dinner.

I really really thought hard about just skipping it all together, but this competition thing has me motivated to do at least something.  According to DietBet, I'm at 47% of my goal - I can't stop now!!  Skipping a workout would be counterproductive.  So, instead of skipping, I just got on the treadmill and walked for 30 min.  I didn't incline, I didn't bump up the speed, but at least I was moving for a few minutes.  I did get my FuelPoints goal, so there's that AND I will do the resistance training tomorrow.

So, there's another idea to add to the brainstorm list:  Call in a Sub

No, not that kind of sub
Definitely NOT that one!!

Oh yes please, can we call this one????
Oops - sidetracked... Moving on
5) if I don't have time to do the "regularly" scheduled plan,  substitute SOMETHING to get it done.

Besides the comp, why is it so important to not skip a workout at this point?  Well, I mentioned before that I don't want to start down that road, because it could possibly lead to more skipping.  Then something will click in my brain that says it's ok to skip exercise.  Right now, it is not ok.  I don't think I'm exercising enough or at a high enough intensity to afford myself the luxury of skipping workouts - even just one.  But, later on, after I've had months of this routine under my belt, then sure.  Or even better, once I've met my goal.  Since I won't be trying to lose weight any longer, I shouldn't need to workout so purposefully.  Hopefully, I will be leading such an active life with hiking and climbing and camping and biking and dare I say... running?  Hopefully, I'll be doing all those things and won't need to be so intentional about getting into shape, because I'll already be in shape.

Does that make any sense at all?  I'm probably tired and missing some huge pitfall in my thinking...  You're pretty smart, let me know if you see it ok?

Goodnight all!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Fitting in Exercise on "Busy Days"

Do you skip exercise because it's been one of those days? I have.  Of course, had I known it was going to be one of those days, maybe I would have gotten out of bed earlier.  

"Morning people" - uggghhh I'm so jealous =p
Oh, who am I kidding?  Honestly, I doubt I would.  I am NOT a morning person.  Work starts for me at 6am and I have to drive 40 minutes to get there, I don't do mornings gracefully AND I don't get out of bed any earlier than I have to.  Therefore, exercising before work is a very unlikely option for me.  I'm a night person, so I typically would rather exercise at 9pm over 4am ANY day!  Not everyone is like me though - some of you morning people (grrrr!) can get up at like 3:30am, knock out some exercise, grab a shower, have some breakfast, and even catch up on some news while enjoying a cup of coffee - all before leaving for work.  Then, if you DO have a busy day, your workout is already done.  Well, that's the perfect world in which I do not live - wish I did!!! But alas, it is not to be =(

Seriously though, when and how do we fit exercise in on THOSE days?  Those days that are so crazy, you've already pulled your own hair out and now the dog is hiding?  When your "To Do" list has its own To Do list?  I know it's ok to miss a workout - it's not the end of the world.  But if I go down that road and miss one and then another and... well, you get the point.  I don't want to be a snowballing workout skipper!!  

Ok, ok, don't panic - let's just brainstorm here...
1) Exercise early (already said that, even if I can't do it maybe you can)

2) Exercise late - might as well throw that in - lots of controversy on working out right before bed, but it's better than nothing, right?

3) Exercise while at work - go for a walk during lunch (if it's not a million degrees outside - of course the mall is always an option for A/C

4) Set a permanent "appointment" for exercise time - only cancel in emergencies - NOTE TO SELF:  grocery shopping should not be deemed an "emergency" 

5) ok.... I don't know what else... anyone... Bueller?

I realized I didn't post anything on my exercise from the last few days... don't want you thinking I've been slacking!!

On Monday, geocaching didn't happen again due to weather, but I was busy running errands all day anyway.

Yesterday, I did resistance training - the whole workout (including stretches - yay!).  I've been keeping track of the weights in a notebook so I can add as it gets easier.  So far, the only area I have problems with reaching muscle fatigue is my back.  I'm doing lat pulldowns and "lawn mower pulls" but both just wear out my shoulders/arms before my back ever really engages.  I may have to switch to something different.  Any suggestions?

Today is treadmill day @ 3.0-3.2 mph @ a 2.0-2.5 incline for 30 minutes - I was able to bump up the speed and incline for about 15 minutes before my calves almost refused to continue.  Since I had dinner and jour before, I just did stretching and left out core work (again).  I figured out that when I do remember to stretch after a workout, I'm not near as sore the next day.  

Change Up
I'm thinking of doing 3 resistance training days each week instead of only 2 and change my Monday goal to getting that 2500 points in Nike Fuel but still geocaching or bike riding.  The new resistance day will be Saturday.  The plan will be to do two exercises for each targeted muscle group.  Right now, I do two for some, but not all - mostly due to time constraints.  It's taking me about 1.5 hours to complete the Tues/Thurs training.  If I split it all up, I will be able to cut the time down to about an hour, while bumping up the training a bit and of course, adding in a bit more cardio to the Saturday mix.  

If you do resistance training, which muscle groups do you work together?

Alrighty then, until tomorrow!! 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Picky Eaters Rejoice - You can still be healthy!!

THIS JUST IN... Just because something has been determined to be a healthy food and other people like to eat it, doesn't mean I have to like it too!!  You just don't hear folks talking about how "healthy" food tastes compared to the fattening junk food that so many people (including me) enjoy.  It seems like when we decide to change and become healthier people, living healthier lives, eating healthier food, our tastebuds should just automatically fall in line.  Well, that doesn't always happen, does it?  

My dad and mom accidentally raised a picky eater - me.  When I was a child, I could not STAND a number of foods cooked in our house - certain foods would literally make me gag - at the dinner table - while my parents were trying to eat.  Meatloaf, boiled squash, stew, peas, carrots, were just some of the foods.  My dad would get so tired of hearing/watching me try to eat that he'd finally just yell "JUST LET HER EAT CEREAL!!!!"  I wasn't faking the reaction - not even a little, but looking back, I feel so bad for doing that because I'm sure it made my mom feel like crap.  I know when my kids would turn their noses up at meals I just spent time cooking, it would definitely get under my skin <mild understatement there>.  

Don't get me wrong though, my mom also cooked really great meals too.  My absolute favorite was her chicken and rice.  But of course as we get older and have families of our own, we bring our own tastes to the table.  So, oddly enough, I never fed my kids meatloaf, boiled squash, stew, peas, carrots, etc.  Turns out, my kids love meatloaf AND peas AND carrots!! Ewwww!  They found this out by hanging out with friends, school lunch, etc.  But one ended up being a picky eater anyway, just like her mom.  So, I made the rule that everyone has to try a couple bites of something "new" (even me).  Most of the time we like it well enough to finish the meal.

I continue to test my own taste buds on previously detested foods.  I keep trying different friends' meatloaf because EVERYONE says I'll LOVE THEIR meatloaf.  But I don't.  I learned how to control the gag reflex for the most part now, but meatloaf still doesn't taste good to me.  I try peas every 5 years or so, same with carrots.  Stew is ok now - as long as I don't eat the mushy carrots!  And I have yet to try squash again because I have no idea how to cook it outside of boiling it - and I already know that way doesn't taste good.  

I realize the "healthy" foods I don't care for are indeed good for me and the junk food I used to crave is not.  So I do keep an  eye open for new recipes, websites, and blogs to keep pushing those tastebud boundaries.  

Finding Katie's site was sooooo cool!  She does so much with so many healthy foods (that actually taste good too!).  Recently, I read one of her posts that was of particular interest to the picky eater in me.  She was talking about how when she tried first tried chia seeds...   Turns out she didn't really care for them, but later, she came up with a recipe that she really did like.  And like her post says "...eating something just because it's good for you?  Ridiculous!"  

"If you aren't big on a certain food, there are plenty of ways to get all your nutrients somewhere else. For example, my sister hates bananas. So she gets her potassium from foods she does like, such as yams, spinach, and broccoli. No big deal. Remember that mental health is an important component to overall health, too. If you're choking down foods you detest, your mental health will suffer!" (from Chocolate Covered Katie: )

So there it is.  The light has finally dawned on my and my tastebuds. While I truly wish that I could automatically enjoy every single healthy food, it's ok if I don't and it's ok if you don't either.  It's ok if I don't like peas or cooked carrots or even meatloaf.  Rest assured those nutrients can be found elsewhere.  I will keep trying new recipes to cook and I will continue to try new foods.  I'm just not going to force myself to eat something just because it's "healthy".  (quietly stepping off my soapbox now...)

I hope you had an excellent day!

Monday, July 22, 2013

It's a Hungry Weigh-in

Woo-hoooo!  Down 3 pounds last week and lookin' forward to this week!!  This past week has been odd - I don't know why, but I was more hungry than usual.  I'm eating good portion sizes, with healthy snacking between meals, but for whatever reason, I'm hungry.  Usually everyday around the same time - 3-4pm.  That's not good because if I don't really want to cook (which I rarely ever really want to) that could lead to "my irritable hunger" which can trigger me to just saying to heck with dinner and then eat out.  I don't want to eat out, ok, well, maybe sometimes I do.  But eating out would be counter-productive at this point, so I just can't do it!

Updated Menu
Next up, there's an updated menu plan for this week. It's "Week 2" on the Meal Plans page and includes a couple of recipe links.  I'm enjoying trying different recipes (especially when they're quick and easy!).  I find that my teen will at least try everything I cook - she's still a picky eater (as am I), but at least she tries stuff.  Huge step in the right direction! HUGE!!

Free Day
For the past several weeks, I've been paying attention to how I feel on my free days.  Now keep in mind that I eat whatever I've been craving all week and sometimes, it's excessive.  Anyway, I've noticed heartburn, nausea and a general lousy feeling on these free days.  Am I going to stop?  NO!  I'm just making a mental note that I feel like crap when I eat crap - and not due to some kind of weight loss guilt either.  I literally feel bad - physically.  Yuck.  Noted.  Moving on...

Thank You!
Big thanks to Sheryl for writing about another blog - 300 pounds down.  I was checking it out the other day and read the post from July 10th.  Without spoiling the amazing story, I'll just say I had the same problem Holly did minus the time and abuse.  Six weeks after having my son, I was hospitalized.  But what was truly serendipitous was in the comment section of the same post - someone named "Faith" said she also had this procedure and even so many years later still has "phantom pains".  I almost cried out when I read that!!  I've had these inexplicable mind-blowing abdominal/chest/back slicing-me-in-half pains a few times a year for over a decade and I had no idea what it was.  After some research, I now know what it is and it won't be near as frightening next time and I'll be able to just hang on knowing it'll pass.  And before any of my friends yell at me for not going to the doctor, this pain goes away after a half hour to an hour so by the time I could get to the doctor, they would have nothing to diagnose.  I've mentioned the pains before and they've been dismissed as indigestion.  But know I know exactly what it is medically and even what to do to calm it faster.  So all I can say is THANK YOU SO MUCH Sheryl and Holly!!!!

Lots of stuff going on...

Posted pictures on the "Pictures" page

and created my

New FaceBook page!!

and finally...

I typed up a sortable shopping list for every ingredient in this week's meal plan.  It's an Excel spreadsheet.  If you'd like a copy, just email me and I'll send it to you.  I know, I'm such a dork for making a sortable grocery list, but what can I say?  =P

Have a great week everyone!  Just keep moving!!

And now I leave you with a picture I took the other day - can you see the "smiley face" in the clouds?  HINT:  It's just shy of the center of the pic.

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