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Archive for August, 2012

I have completed six weeks of eating clean and exercising on a regular basis, and I’m loving the results. I lost 4 pounds this week bringing me to a total of 11 pounds lost since making this lifestyle change. My jeans are no longer choking me at the waist. I can wear shirts I put in the back of my closet because they are no longer too tight. I am starting to see definition in my body. And, I feel better not just physically, but also mentally. I no longer feel sluggish or worn out. I have more energy, which makes me happy.

Even though Jackie Warner recommends doing her power circuits three days a week, I am dropping down to two days a week. Power circuits combine cardio and strength training. I’m increasing the number of minutes I’m running, and I don’t want to injure myself. So, I’m listening to my body. I will replace one power circuit day with regular strength training. This will also allow me to take off more days in between the power circuits for recovery.   

My plan for this week is to run/walk on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and possibly Sunday (bonus day). Last week I ran ALL four days. Woo-Hoo! This week may be a bit more challenging since a hurricane is coming our way. I’ll just have to adjust my schedule. I’ll be happy as long as I can complete three run/walk workouts. My run/walk workout this week: Walk 10 minutes, run 6 minutes. Walk 4 minutes, run 6 minutes (repeat twice). You may notice, I’ve upped walking at the beginning to 10 minutes. Since my running is increasing, I need to warm up my legs longer. It makes a big difference for me. I don’t feel so stiff when I start running.

Nutritionally, I must confess this week I started adding 1 tsp of light brown sugar to my oatmeal. This sets me back an additional 15 calories, which is not very much. There is no fat and 4g of sugar. I  had no negative effects from adding this to my breakfast. I also ate plain greek yogurt twice this week. Yuck! I just cannot get use to the taste. So, one day I added honey, and another day I added light brown sugar with walnuts and apple. It definitely made the greek yogurt more palatable; however, I have to figure out another alternative, or I’m nixing the plain greek yogurt from my diet. Believe it or not, plain greek yogurt contains 9g of sugar for a 1 cup serving. I can tolerate eating fresh fruit with a 1/2 cup of plain greek yogurt. The solution may be to eat a 1/2 cup instead of a full cup. Perhaps, I could  incorporate oats or whey protein powder. Something to think about.

This weight loss journey is definitely a work in progress. I enjoy getting up early to run/walk, experimenting with strength training workouts, as well as discovering healthy foods and trying out new recipes. While at times, this journey can be challenging and a little frustrating to stay the course, it also can be energizing and very satisfying. 

“A ship is always safe at the shore – but that is NOT what it is built for.”       ~Albert Einstein

    

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A few years ago at a morning assembly at school, the principal was giving the student body, as well as the teachers information for the day. I cannot remember what prompted her to bring up the subject of expectations. However, she made the statement that expectations can lead to disappointment. When I first heard this, I was a bit confused. Shouldn’t we have expectations if we are to reach goals? The answer is yes and no. Since that morning assembly, I have encountered what the principal meant. I have been the one who has had expectations of others and even myself, and I’ve experienced people who have certain expectations of me. Expectations lead to disappointment when the expectations exceed a person’s best attempt at what is expected of them.

Since I have been eating clean (five weeks), I’ve had certain expectations about how this is going to turn out. Actually, every week I expect to lose weight. Therefore, imagine my disappointment when I weighed in yesterday and saw that I did not lose any weight, but had gained a pound. I was crushed. Intellectually, I knew the weight gain had to do with water weight instead of fat weight. Emotionally, I felt funky. There were no hoots and hollers when I had to take a marble out of the “pounds lost” container and drop it back in the “pounds to go” container. Technically, I should have been thrilled I didn’t gain more weight under the circumstances. Yes, this is the week of my monthly visitor. Generally, I gain between two and three pounds of water weight during the week of the wretched curse. And, let us not forget the added bonus of the huge red zit displayed on my chin. Ladies, you understand. This is an example of my expectations exceeding my best. I cannot control water weight gain caused by certain female conditions any more than I can control the weather. Yesterday, I should have expected to gain weight and should have been pleasantly surprised and pleased with the small amount I did gain. It is in perspective now.

Running/Walking Schedule   

It rained ALL day yesterday, therefore, I did not get my fourth run/walk day in for the week. I admit I was disappointed because I had this expectation I need to run/walk four days a week. I realized the fourth day needs to be treated like a bonus. So, I adjusted my workout schedule, as well as my attitude and did Jackie Warner’s Xtreme Timesaver Training DVD in the morning rather than in the afternoon like I originally planned.

This week I plan to run/walk on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and possibly Sunday (remember…bonus). My run/walk workout this week: Walk 5 minutes, run 5 minutes. Repeat three times

Food Finds

This week I made three new discoveries of yumminess:  Newman’s Own Lite Raspberry & Walnut salad dressing (2 Tbsp contains 5g fat; 70 calories; 5g sugar), Toufayan Bakeries Whole Wheat Pita Bread (1 Loaf contains 1g fat; 150 calories; 2g sugar), and Athenos Reduced Fat Feta Cheese (1 ounce contains 3.5g fat; 50 calories; 0g sugar).

Thoughts

I only have one expectation of myself, and it is to do my best in all circumstances. I acknowledge that my best today may not equal my best tomorrow. However, I will do my best. I will be enthusiastic about the possibilities surrounding this week. Life is an adventure, so expect the unexpected because anything can happen.

“Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed.”                 ~ Alexander Pope

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Pepperoni Pizza was my favorite food until yesterday. Buttery crust, tangy sauce, melted mozzarella cheese, and spicy pepperoni all make for a yummy treat. However, the consequences later on are not quite so yummy. We had a family birthday party for Andrew on Saturday, and decided pizza would be on the menu. Of course, we also had chips and dips, cake and ice cream, and a light Caesar Salad. This weekend was my first experience eating pizza since I started eating clean. I ate in moderation and enjoyed it all. Unfortunately, pepperoni pizza has lots of sodium (didn’t notice prior to eating clean). I was sooooooo thirsty the rest of the day AND night. I kept drinking water hoping it would quench my thirst, but to no avail. Instead, I felt bloated from drinking so much water. After my parents left, I decided to go for a forty minute walk just to feel a little better. Walking helped immensely. However, I was still thirsty and ended up with a dull headache.

The next morning, I went for my run/walk (switched to Sunday due to rain Saturday morning). I felt much better and not as thirsty. I weighed in at 145 pounds (lost another 1.5 pounds). Well, I would love to tell you I did not eat any of the leftover pizza, but it would be a lie. Yes, I ate two pieces along with another slice of cake, Cheetos (can you even imagine this), and pretzel/chocolate treats. And, to top it off…I drank Coke with my dinner. Gasp! I know… it seems horrifying, and I’m a little embarrassed. Well, not really. I AM allowed to have treat meals on the weekend. I did pay the price in the end. I was extremely thirsty AGAIN and drank tons of water AGAIN. I did not like the feeling at all. Lesson learned. 

Running/Walking Schedule

Since school started, I have been getting up super early to get my workouts in before bringing Andrew to school. It is really dark at 5AM in the morning. Thank goodness for street lights. I admit I was a little freaked out the first early morning I walked (consequence of being a horror fanatic). I do have to bring a small flashlight with me on the days I run/walk because I cannot see my watch to time my run segments. I also carry pepper spray for any unwanted scary people or animals that may cross my path.

I LOVE getting my workout completed in the morning. It makes a big difference in my day. I’m more productive, and I don’t have to worry about something unexpected coming up in the afternoon to interfere with me exercising. I would love to continue walking on the days I do strength training (power circuits); however, this can only be accomplished if I split my workouts into two sessions on those days. For example, tomorrow I can walk in the morning and strength train in the afternoon or vice versa. If my schedule for the day would not allow me to be able to do both strength training and walking, I would just do the strength training. I have to incorporate the strength training throughout the week to avoid running injuries.

This week I plan to run/walk on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and possibly Sunday. If my legs do not have enough recovery time between Sunday and Monday, I’ll go back to alternating days. My run/walk workout this week: Walk 6 minutes, run 4 minutes. Repeat three times

Food Find

I discovered Amy’s Organic Soup. There are a few varieties at Wal-Mart. I tried Amy’s Lentil Veggie, which is light in sodium (1 cup contains 4g fat; 160 calories; 5g sugar). I think it’s tasty and has a lot of flavor. I ate the whole can, which is 2 cups. Of course, I didn’t have anything else with it. Next time, I may pair one cup of the soup with a side salad and a couple of whole wheat crackers. Or, pair the one cup of soup with half of a turkey sandwich. Oh, the possibilities.

“Sometimes it takes a good fall to really know where you stand.” ~ Hayley Williams

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It’s Monday and time for my weekly weight loss update. Yes, I’m continuing to lose weight. I weighed in at 146.5 pounds. I had to transfer half of a marble to my “pounds lost” container. So, I wrote 1/2 on a round color coding label and stuck it on a marble. HA! Not very creative, I know. To date, I have lost a total of 6.5 pounds.

The Jackie Warner DVDs I ordered arrived late last week. I watched all three this weekend to see which one I would use first. I was sweating just watching her workouts. Tough! Her workouts are definitely going to kick my booty.  I decided to start with Personal Training with Jackie: Power Circuit Training. There are five workout options: two Total Body Circuits (15-minute & 40-minute), Abs Only Circuit (15-minute), Upper Body Circuit (15-minute), and a Lower Body Circuit (15-minute). This morning I chose the 15-Minute Total Body Circuit, which I did after my 30 minute walk. You move the entire time. Very fast-paced. Love the energy.

Running/Walking Schedule

This week I plan to run/walk on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. Walk 7 minutes, run 3 minutes. Repeat three times. The other days of the week I will be walking for cardio. I will be doing Power Circuits three days a week on the days I am not running/walking.  

Last week, my run/walk schedule was on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. Walk 8 minutes. Run 2 minutes. Walk 1 minute (repeat 3-minute session 5 times). Walk 8 minutes. I’m basically alternating days to allow for recovery.

I did take a rest day on Saturday. When my alarm went off, I got up to go walk; however, I crawled right back into bed when I saw lightning. I decided to sleep late. Mistake! Sleeping late = foggy, groggy brain for Kat. I felt off all day long. So, note to self:  if I take a rest day, do not sleep late.

Thoughts

Honestly, since I started my weight loss program keeping up with my workouts and my food journal haven’t been too hard; however, I know this will change on Wednesday. School is starting and life will get a bit more complicated. It will require planning and getting up earlier than 5:30AM if I want to get my cardio workout in before school starts in the morning. Eventually, I will be adding a job to the mix. Thus, more of a time crunch. It is basically going to boil down to priorities and choices.

“You rarely have time for everything you want in this life, so you need to make choices. And hopefully your choices can come from a deep sense of who you are. ” ~ Fred Rogers

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WOW!

What a Week!

And, it was mainly about my youngest son, Andrew. Last weekend, Andrew was in a musical theater performance of School House Rock. Most of you remember those catchy songs with an educational message. He performed three times to packed audiences. His grandparents even came to see him perform. Lots of energy, lots of smiles!

Andrew singing “Elbow Room” in a musical theater performance of School House Rock.

Lights, Camera, Action! Andrew and I went to the movies TWICE this week to see The Amazing Spiderman (Marvel Comic fans) and Ice Age: Continental Drift. We enjoyed both movies.

Happy Birthday! Andrew’s birthday was Wednesday. He is officially 11 years old. My hubby and I gave him an iPod Touch for his birthday. Needless to say, his entire day revolved around this electronic device. Thanks to mon frere, Moonius Maximus, for answering our numerous questions about the iPod Touch and iPod Touch cases,  as well as helping us through the steps of setting up an iTunes account. Hooray! I no longer feel so app deficient.  

Welcome! Last night, Andrew and I went to his school for Supplies and Hi’s. He dropped off his school supplies and met his new teacher, Mrs. Inman. Andrew is a 6th grader this year. Summer vacation is quickly coming to an end. School starts next week. Darn!

What about ME?

So, what’s going on with me this week? Booyah! I lost another two pounds. That is a total of 5 pounds lost since my weight loss journey began. I also started walking/running this week. My schedule for this weekWalk 8 minutes. Run 2 minutes. Walk 1 minute (repeat 3-minute session 5 times). Walk 8 minutes. This schedule comes from the book Running and Walking for Women Over 40: The Road to Sanity and Vanity by Kathrine Switzer. This is a schedule for anyone wanting to become a 30-minute runner in 10 weeks. I will tweak the schedule a little bit to meet my needs. The goal is to run without getting injuries.

Yesterday, I received the Jackie Warner DVDs. I will be viewing them over the weekend, so I can incorporate them in my exercise schedule. These DVDs will replace the Power Circuit workouts from her book.

I discovered two bread/grain items in the grocery store that have made eating clean more enjoyable: Oroweat Pocket Thins 8 Grain Flatbread (1/2 flatbread contains 1.5g fat; 100 calories; 2g sugar) and Kashi’s Heart to Heart Roasted Garlic Whole Grain Crackers (7 crackers contains 3.5g fat; 120 calories; 0g sugar). I’ve been eating egg salad (2 eggs, 1 Tbsp Hellmann’s Light Mayonnaise, salt, pepper, paprika) inside the flatbread. I ate the crackers with sardines. Yum! 

Finally, I spent some time this week looking for a job. Sadly, my days as a freelancer are coming to an end. I just know there is an opportunity out there waiting for me with flexibility, fun people, and pay higher than minimum wage. I just have to find it. Eek!

Detour! My favorite School House Rock song was “Unpack Your Adjectives”

Question: What was your favorite School House Rock song? I’d love to know.  Please leave me a comment.

“It is not often that a man can make opportunities for himself. But he can put himself in such shape that when or if the opportunities come he is ready.”             ~ Theodore Roosevelt

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