Monday, August 30, 2010

I am still working on getting it right. In weeks past I posted about how controlled my calories were. This past week, my exercise has been regular and intense, but my eating has been, well, more than it should. No binging, nothing too out of control. I think that trying to cut back on calories may have backfired.

Nut butter is something that I am going to have to keep out of the house for a while. I am not attracted to the kid’s hydrogenated stuff, but the dark chocolate almond butter and the white chocolate peanut butter is going to have to go for a while. Getting enough protein is an issue in my diet, but I am going to seek sustenance from something with fewer fats and calories.

My steps ahead this past week: For the first time ever I ran for a whole 30 minutes and covered about 3 miles and I have had many successful smoothie creations.

Here is a new week! Leap ahead!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Duly inspired by Patrick, I planned a run at 5 AM this morning. However, the inspiration of the Sand Man overpowered Patrick’s good example and that run never happened. It is probably for the best because it has been a constant rain since I awoke this morning at 6. I have run in the wet, I have run in the cold, but I think wet and cold would have been overwhelming at 5 AM. (Should that be “ran” or “run”? Microsoft Word says it is “run.” Hmmm.) I still plan to take that run tonight.

I have not been doing so well with keeping my calories below my new limit. I tried to cut back only a few hundred calories, but that is easier said than done. I am still eating below maintenance, so I am not too worried. Peanut Butter seems to be the real culprit that is setting this goal amiss. I am uncertain what to do because getting enough protein in a diet stuffed full of fruits and veggies is already a challenge for me.

If you have completed the C25K, what are your plans? How do you plan to keep in shape during the winter? Do you plan to do the C25K again in the spring, or do you have a plan to keep up the running indoors?

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

C25K Graduate

I have finished the C25K program, but I am still working on perfecting my time. I run about 3 miles in 30 minutes, sometimes more like 2.75 miles, so my time could use some work. I take walk breaks sometimes for 2 to 3 minutes when I really feel like I need to. I am still very happy with the distance I am able to cover and how good I feel running. Loosening up on myself and being a bit more easy going about the program has made running more fun for me. Some runs are better than others, but the key for me is just doing it 3 days a week no matter what is going on or how I feel.

This week I have stepped up the strength building. I am mostly working on upper body and core strength. It feels good. This is a part of my fitness program that I have neglected at times.

Yesterday I made BBQ Kale Chips...

BBQ Kale Chips

1 T Mesquite BBQ seasonings (garlic, onion powder, cumin, paprika, pepper)
1 t Splenda
3 cups Kale removed from stems and washed
Nonstick spray

Set oven to 300. I used a premade Mesquite rub, but you can easily mix your own seasonings. After preparing kale, place one layer on sprayed cookie sheet. Spray kale with nonstick spray and sprinkle with Splenda and BBQ seasonings. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Monday, August 16, 2010

New Resolve

I have been hovering right around 10 pounds from my goal for a while now. This has been mostly due to my satisfaction with being this weight. I feel good! I feel really good, most days! That feeling of jumping out of the bed in the morning, even when I didn’t sleep so well the night before, is my favorite part of being healthier... but I digress.

My goal weight became my goal because it is the weight that the FDA proclaims healthy for my height. I have been slouching around for a while and I now have set a plan into action to fix that. (For some reason I feel this post needs some evil laughter at the end. Maybe it is all the talk about my “plan.”)

I am cranking up and varying my workouts and pulling back slightly on calories (only slightly pulling back because I am afraid of stalling my weight loss; my caloric intake is pretty steady and controlled now).

Mwahhh, ha, ha, ha!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

I think I am coming out of my funk. This week has been a toughie, but I am nearly soaring today.

I am fortunate that I am not a true binger. However, I do have some tendencies in that direction. I have to be careful around the sweets because those are the old eats that I miss most. I am learning new ways, primarily using fruit, to get my sweet fix without heading back to old habits.

The binge tendencies really showed themselves this week. Monday I realized during a stressful phone conversation that I was almost planning to go out for cake and ice cream. It was weird because it was more of an urge or desire that was beginning to cement itself in my consciousness. Just as my plans began to take shape with me eating a helping that equaled more like 3 real portions and leaving the rest for the kids (as if I was being selfless by doing it for the kids), I reminded myself that I do not eat that way anymore. The urge returned over the next couple days, that cake became chocolate in my mind as the urge and plan was further getting a foothold, but I resisted.

Today I ran out to the market for a few things and didn’t even think about that cake and ice cream. I didn’t even realize I had done it until I sat down to write this post. I am almost certain that had I visited the market on Monday or Tuesday, I would have given in. With what refined sugar does to my blood sugar levels these days, I would have been stoned all day.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Earlier in the day I changed into running clothes and began stoking myself up for a run that I wasn’t feeling up to; this seemed to help. After my 5 minute warm-up walk, I took off and as I looked down my path I figured it would be awesome to run around the neighboring baseball field.

This baseball diamond is surrounded by uneven ground and has totally wiped me out in the past. Running on uneven, grassy terrain partially uphill is hard. So in the very beginning I ran it. I ran around that diamond that seems troublesome for the high school boys who run around it. I ran the rest of my run (20 minutes) and finished with another trip around the diamond. I think I may make this grassy route part of my regular run. The hills could really make my legs stronger.

I was doing really well within the C25K program until the heat wave hit. I’ve ran 25 minutes twice, but for the last couple weeks my runs have been more like 20 to 22 minutes. I felt good about my 20 minutes tonight because of those trips around the baseball diamond. It feels wonderful to do something that seemed so challenging before. It was tough, especially the second time, but I did it!

After my most excellent run, I came home and made this Green Goddess dressing for my salads tomorrow.

Make tomorrow a great day!

Blogging For the Greater Good

I want to send a big Thank You out to my friend Big Clyde at The Clydesdale Project. To be honest with you all, I have not been feeling it this week at all. My diet has been healthy and within my calorie allowance, but the exercise has not been coming easily. Right now, due largely to inspiration from Clyde, I am wearing running clothes and will be heading out later this evening for my C25K run. Thanks again, Big Clyde and all the other fitness/weight loss bloggers who pique my thoughts in the direction of better living every day.

So this is how this works, aye?! Jack Sh*t has posted often about how much blogging has helped him in his journey. At this point in my journey, I am in quasi-maintenance. I am 10 pounds away from goal, but some of my habits have shifted from loss to maintenance. When I first started I could lose 6 pounds in a week, while now losing 1 pound here and there makes me smile. Most of the time just not gaining makes me very happy. I can see blogging being a huge aid in helping me to maintain for the long term.

A few blogs very worthy of recognition (in no particular order):

Dr. Fatty Finds Fitness
Responsibility 199
Losing Weight after 45 is a B*tch
The Daily Diary of a Winning Loser
The Anti-Jared
Bitch Cakes

And, of course...

The Clydesdale Project
Jack Sh*t

I have been reading most of these blogs throughout the process of losing 80 pounds and I cannot thank the writers enough.

Friday, August 6, 2010

OMG! I found Truwhip!

This may not seem like a big deal. It is to me because when I began losing weight, my kids still wanted sweet treats from time to time. Low sugar cakes topped with an icing made of fruity yogurt and Lite Cool Whip became a dessert that I could share with the kids. As clean eating became more of a priority and the knowledge I was garnering began trickling into the choices I made as a mother, Cool Whip was one of the first chemical laden products that stopped coming into my home.

But, I still occasionally like cake (whine, whine). Last night we made strawberry shortcake (my youngest made a tall concoction she called “longcake”).

Strawberry Short(long)cake

1 box reduced sugar yellow cake mix
1/3 cup water
2 egg whites
1 cup natural applesauce
1 container strawberry yogurt

1 container Truwhip
1 container strawberry yogurt
1 pound strawberries

Mix cake mix with applesauce, water, egg whites, and yogurt and bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until lightly brown. Mix second yogurt and Truwhip. Layer cake, berries, and topping in bowls or parfait cups. 16 servings= less than 200 calories a serving!

(Truwhip did not sponsor this post in any way! I am just pleased to find an all natural whipped topping sans high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, and other funky stuff.)

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

I have been making my own yogurt!!! Yes, all those exclamation marks are at the end of that sentence because this excites me!! Making my own yogurt saves money, ensures that I am eating clean, and, I don’t know, it just feels so dang quaint. You can make your own plain yogurt, too.

You need:

Crock pot slow cooker

8 cups of milk (anything but ultra pasteurized; I use skim milk)

Yogurt starter (you can buy yogurt starter or just use a small container of natural plain yogurt with live active cultures)


Place milk in slow cooker and turn switch to low setting for 2 1/2 hours. Unplug, do not remove lid, and allow milk to sit for 3 hours. Remove about 2 cups of warm milk, mix with live cultures and pour contents back into slow cooker. Wrap towel completely around cooker for insulation and leave it for 8 hours.

Your final product should be slightly runnier than store bought yogurt, but can be strained through a coffee filter in a mesh strainer for a thicker, creamier consistency. The final product may be a bit lumpier than the store bought stuff too, but this is only because the yogurt lumps are floating in whey. It’s completely natural and while it may not look great, it tastes so fresh.

It’s weird... I was never a foodie, I could not even really cook until I began living healthier and caring about what sort of food I put into my body.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Still making progress, but so tired

Life has not been a bowl of cherries. Well, actually I’ve been eating so many fresh cherries that removing all those pits have stained my fingers and left me in dire need of fresh manicure, but Life has been full change and difficulties. I always feel like a whiny child when I write stuff like this. Adults are supposed to be accustomed to life being difficult and unfair and act accordingly with resilience by adapting. But, to be honest, my husband losing his job is the worst thing that has ever happened to us. This is the biggest blind change we’ve ever made. I look back and feel as though we were hiding in that small town where everyone knew our names and knew our history. Now, I am constantly dealing with city dwellers who seem to always be covering their a*ses because they’ve been screwed over so many times. Business and social interactions are just very different here. It is a different culture out here, folks.

During times like this I just want to run. I want to run until I burn. it. out. Thanks to the C25K I can now run. I could barely run 1 minute when I started, now I easily run at least 25 minutes, and that is if I don’t feel up to the full 30 minutes for some reason.

Some days I feel like I have mastered my bad habits. I can look back over several days and see that I have eaten plenty of veggies, drank lots of water, exercised, and taken excellent care of myself. Then something crashes and I find myself struggling. I find myself reminding myself of why I began this journey, why I even lost over 80 pounds to begin with, and I keep reminding myself with a pitiful weariness.

The good news is that a year after beginning all this “new lifestyle” stuff, greasy foods totally disgust me. The idea of eating cheese fries smothered in ranch dressing or a fastfood burger (foods I once thrived on) totally turns my stomach. Now if I could just get all disgusted by cheesecake or cookies, I’d have this thing all set.