Thursday, October 27, 2011


I had to call my gym the other day to figure something out with my billing cycle. In doing that, I was surfing around in my online profile and membership information and noticed that I haven't been to the gym since August 4th.

That's a really long time.

I've been in school, I've been working, and I've been slightly active. I ride my bike (sometimes... not as often), I climb stairs, I walk to the market, and I go dancing with my manpanion, but I have gained back everything I lost during the couple of weeks when I was working hard.

I'm still at the weight that I've maintained for the last year.

I need to get to the gym.

What would you do if you only had 30 minutes to work out?

Thursday, October 20, 2011


I haven't had the time to update, really.

Between work, which is really picking up, and school, which is steadily crazy, and my semblance of a life, which is sporadic at best, I've been scheduled out.

With "life" being super hectic, I haven't been focusing on my goals. I have been cooking for myself, however, but many times skipping "real" meals and opting for too much of a tasty snack. SmartPuffs, specifically, have become a major crutch. Luckily, even when I eat the whole bag, it's still equivalent to a "normal" healthy meal in the range of calories, though it does not put much nutrition into the mix. It has some protein.... sort of.

I have a healthy bag of excuses, all of which are acceptable to me, but are enabling me to continue down the path of stress eating - a habit I still haven't been able to squelch in the dozen years I've been working on it.

WHY is food so powerful? Why is it so comforting? Why can't I just take a hot shower instead of inhaling a bag of delicious cheesy curls?

Well, I can.

I'm simply choosing not to.

...though it doesn't feel like a choice when it's happening.

I feel like I don't have the TIME to choose to do something else. Where I'd opt for a brisk walk in our newly chilly MN weather, I honestly can't spare the half hour, because I need it to read and take notes on a piece of the chapter that I need to understand, or I need to edit a paper, or respond to a reading.

I'm halfway through my first semester of college, and I've gained about 2 pounds, but it's the same 2 pounds I've been losing and gaining for the last year, I'm just not really losing it again these last 3 weeks.

A couple of holidays are coming up - which is always dangerous for us Westerners. Halloween involves tons of cheap and readily available candy, and Thanksgiving means a GIANT meal, many times over.

Halloween is less terrifying. I'm not a very big fan of chocolate, which rules out most of the leftover fun-sized treats that coworkers pawn off on the office. As long as I don't buy any thing (Swedish fish, for example), I should be good.

Thanksgiving, however, lasts about 3 weeks. Between one side of my family gathering on the 19th of November for a weekend at my sister's cabin, Dinner with my Dad on the actual Holiday, and a weekend at Paul's family cabin... I have a lot of strategizing to do.

Everyone contributes something, so I can control the health factor of my own dish. I chose stuffing, which is typically the scariest thing on the table (for me). However, there will be pie. Dozens of pies. Pumpkin pies, which are my Achilles heel. SO DELICIOUS.

What do I do?

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Failed Relaxation

Yesterday's #30daysofgood challenge was to RELAX.

It sounded like such a great goal, one I could easily accomplish in small increments. However, I wasn't able to accomplish it, and that fact alone has been bothering me.

When I received my email from GOOD in the morning, stating the days intent, I immediately found a space in my schedule and entered in time for a walk. By the time that task rolled around, there was simply too much else to do.

I ended up running around like a chicken with my head cut off all day, and when all the work and (most of) the homework was done, I was cooking dinner for myself and my manpanion while he did his homework and we both scrambled to get enough done so that we could square dancing.

Now, I could try to fit square dancing into my RELAXation goal, but square dancing isn't all that relaxing. In fact, it's pretty good exercise. There's a lot of bouncing and twirling and more bouncing. Some day, I'll have to wear my HRM to a square dancing night so I can report back an accurate calories burned count.

There are, however, some ways in which I can tie square dancing into my RELAXation goal. For one, it was social. I saw a few friends I hadn't had time to schedule in, and we caught up. I also got to get in close and be swung around by my manpanion, something that - while not relaxing at the time - provides a sense of relaxation during this transition period of becoming adult students and losing a lot of the time (which was still infrequent) that we could spend together. So, having time to be close to him to carry with me when there's a large gap is extremely relaxing.

Also, I got so tuckered out by dancing around for 2.5 hours, that I fell asleep instantly upon hitting the pillow, and I slept like a baby.

So hard, in fact, that I slept through my alarm - something that hasn't happened to me in about 5 years.

I somehow managed to get up, get ready and get out the door, making it to work 17 minutes later. That makes me feel like a champ. Of course it helps that I was able to drive to work, and I'm only 3 miles away from my office, but still.

As for the food intake, I didn't have time to track my dinner last night, so I'm not quite sure where I ended the day. I need to enter a new recipe into SparkPeople's recipe builder and determine the exact calorie content, but when I tracked my last food, I still had 800 calories left to hit the BOTTOM of my goal. Pair that with square dancing and I'd assume I came under that.

Because I overslept, I didn't allow myself enough time to eat a real breakfast, so I grabbed my coffee and a banana and ran. Not without packing a pear and a hardboiled egg for an emergency snack when I inevitably become ravenous around 10am.

The evening is packed with homework, but I've rescheduled my walk into the late afternoon and I'm going to try to put some priority into this. I haven't been very active (save for square dancing and riding my bike), and I feel the need to allow my muscles to MOVE.

We're having a crazy Indian Summer here in Minneapolis, are you still playing and working outside?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

first weekend on track.

Sunday is drawing to a close. The sun has already set here in Minneapolis and a new week begins tomorrow, signifying the end of my first week keeping my eye on my eating habits.

I have to say that it went splendidly. Even though I encountered a potential roadblock yesterday when I accompanied my manpanion and his 4 year old son to a 5 year old's birthday party at Grand Slam. This place is like a more active Chuck E. Cheese, so.. it could have been worse.

I made time in the morning to be sure to eat a healthy and filling breakfast while I studied. I selected my fail-proof Scottish Oats with a dab of honey and some almond milk. Picking at this around 9am kept me sated until around 2:30pm when we finally ate. This was one mistake: I should have brought a healthy snack along, because after bouncing in a castle, hitting 65 mph baseballs (seriously! I played baseball on a boys team as a youngster), and Dance Dance Revolutionizing without eating since 9am, I was starving. The party was serving pizza (eeek) and I managed to stuff 3 pieces into my mouth before I decided that I was full. I had, however, been full since the first slice as I don't care for pizza very much (I know) and I don't typically enjoy melted cheese (I KNOW).

I tracked each slice, and also the small square of cake I decided to indulge in, which really was hilariously small. The moms in the group looked at me like "Who are you kidding? What are you trying to prove?" but I carried on with my extremely comical bite of cake. It was exactly how much I wanted and it tasted better because of it.

After such a heavy lunch, I was feeling a little sick as I studied into the night over at Paul's house. Around 7:30pm, he brought me the most perfect plate of food to ensure I still ate something, but intuited that I wouldn't want anything more than exactly what he brought me, which was essentially what I'd been dreaming about the entire time I was reading about Perception and the Senses (Psychology).

Red and Yellow Peppers, Pluot, Kiwi, Rice Crackers with Brie

I hadn't really communicated with Paul much about my decision to keep a stricter eye on my food, especially because last week's decision wasn't really a decision to DIET, or restrict anything I was eating... yet. I just wanted to develop the habit of tracking all of my food intake again, which is something that correlates with healthier eating for me. I'm proud to say he noticed on his own. Just look at that dinner he brought me! It was a perfect accompaniment to an afternoon of heavy eating and because he provided such a healthy meal, even with the cake and pizza I still came in under 1600 calories for the day. That's without counting any of the calories I bounced off at Grand Slam.

I'm really looking forward to this week and reinforcing my habit of tracking all of my food.

Are you looking forward to anything in the upcoming week?