Friday, November 22, 2013

Working from Home

New daily adventures in online workout videos....

HOW CONVENIENT. Seriously. How am I so so so so late to this game? Here's the uber-super-quick one I tried today. It burned.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Doing Things.

In an effort to be less isolated this Winter, I've been attempting to set myself up with some new groups, hobbies and classes.

Last night, I took a bike overhaul class at a local bike/walk center. I met some really neat folks and I'll be going for the next 3 Tuesdays to learn a few things about my various bikes. Last night's introduction was just a refresher for me, teaching people how to change or patch a tube (something I've done 8 billion times and have even won a prize for my speediness at Tour de Fat) and then we worked on doing a hub overhaul. I'd never done that, and I wasn't able to get to my own bike's hubs, but I did observe and assist on a front hub, which was fascinating.

I've also been having a hard time motivating myself to get to the gym as of late. I don't think I made it once during November thus far. I also hadn't been working out because, y'know, I bike and walk everywhere. That changed today when I took fate into my own hands and tried an Internet workout video for the FIRST TIME EVER.

Can you believe that? I've never worked out with my laptop. It was awesome!

Here's the video I tried. I loved it. I will be working out with her again soon!

Tomorrow is weigh in day and I'm not expecting anything. We had a weekend away with my family for an Early Thanksgiving Celebration. We were in the woods and didn't take much time to walk, and we drove so I didn't get any bike rides in. I was relatively sedentary and I ate A LOT. I also drank a lot. Hey, it's the Holidays. I've cut myself some slack and released all guilt about it.

But, I don't expect a loss and I'm already prepared for a gain.

Time to shower away the thin layer of sweat from my Barre workout!

Have you ever worked out with your laptop? What are some of your favorite workout videos that I can find online?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A Month Lost.

Well hello there.

I have made absolutely no progress since I last posted, which seems to be the theme of the last few years.

I think I'm finally starting to accept that I am VERY MUCH in maintenance mode. I just don't have the time or the energy to plan, and because of that, I can't be upset that I'm not making progress in the downward direction. I could make time, but I think that'd be stressful and painful, and then would I be happy with the results? Is a smaller number on the scale really worth putting myself out right now?


I'm kind of growing into this accepting place. I've been using My Fitness Pal for some time now, and it's definitely fun to track all my activity through Endomondo and have it show up in the app for me as calories I can eat... but I do eat them. All of them, and more, every time.

Between this semester coming to a close and the Holidays approaching, I'm ravenous. I'm stress eating, but also I'm human-powered transportation 100% of the time now. I'm walking and biking EVERY WHERE, and I've been really hungry as a result.

My current solution has been to turn to freezer meals like Healthy Choice and Lean Cuisine to assist with portion control and the reality that I get home and I'm already starving, and I just need something... like, now.

I've gained about 2 pounds over the past month, but that's an easy number to flux, I think.

I'm so very excited for Holiday break on campus, because I am going to reinstate my gym routine, which is now more than a month absent.

It is officially time to get back on track.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Weighing In - 10/17/2013

Confusion, friends.

I have been tracking for 10 days straight with My Fitness Pal and consistently coming in below my goal after my fitness calories have been added to it.

This week, I gained 2 pounds.

Excuses aside, it was a strange month, and I'm having some lady issues that have been recurring every few months that we now believe to be indicative of PCOS: Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome, which basically encourages weight gain to begin with.

I feel like I truly am trying and I'm not losing weight, just slightly gaining all the time, enough to completely thwart my efforts.

I'm going to keep tracking, because I think keeping an eye on what I'm eating is really important, but I'm also going to mope a little, because 10 days of meal plans and exercise packed on another 2 pounds. I could have definitely used the rest and relaxation I gave up to work harder.

I've contacted my OB/GYN and we're going to move forward from this, but that doesn't mean it will help my weight gain this year.

Oh, bodies. You are so mysterious.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Weighing In - 10/10/2013

A slight gain of 0.6lbs, to be expected at this time of the month. Y'know... Time Of the Month.

This week, I started tracking with My Fitness Pal. I had intended to double track between this app and my Weight Watchers app, but that became annoying really quickly. Since I've been a Weight Watcher for a decade, I thought maybe I'd give something else my undivided attention for a bit... plus, it's FREE.

What I love:

  • It's FREE!
  • SO MUCH NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION with MFP. I can see Calories, Fat, Sodium, ETC. I can track it all and see where I'm over-consuming and what needs to get reigned in. It's designed to teach you, and it makes sense. PointsPlus don't make sense. (To be fair, points used to make sense.)
  • Reasonable and explained caloric goals based on height/weight/activity level and age. 
  • I can connect MFP to other fitness apps that I use (like Endomondo!) to track activity.
  • MFP recognizes spelling errors. That's one of the WW application's HUGE downfalls in my opinion. 
  • MFP also has a GIANT database of prepared foods. I was able to find absolutely every branded food I searched for this week in only one attempt. WW can't even compare on that front. 
So, I've been tracking every day, because it's new. It's a new toy, and that's always work at least 2 weeks of dedication. I'm hoping I can make it three (21 days makes a habit) and keep on trucking. That's the goal, and I'm pretty motivated right now. 

I'm not at all deterred by this tiny gain, because I had an AMAZING workout yesterday at the gym. I haven't truly gone and cranked it out in about 45 days. I've been busy with school and I came down with a crazy cold that, while mostly gone, is still lingering a bit in my nose and chest. It felt so good to get covered in sweat because I earned it and feel it today in my sore muscles. Can't wait to do it again tomorrow. 

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Weighing In - 10/03/2013

-4.6 pounds.

Well, I was really really sick, so it makes some sense. I didn't work out at all, and I didn't even go to work until last night. Since last weigh in, I was laying in a heep in my bed, all sweaty and full of soup and snot.

I bet I blew out 5lbs of snot! (I genuinely do.)

It's a new week however, and I'm going to continue to track as I have been doing, keeping an eye on my points. I've been trying to eat more protein and snack less, because I eat a lot out of boredom, so I'm focusing on 4 small meals and a lot of water this week.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Sick Haze

Today I went outside for the first time since Thursday afternoon.

Somehow, during my school day, I caught the plague. I was knocked out for two days and hobbling around for one more.

I did a lot of boredom eating, all of which I tracked to keep myself accountable. I tried to make good choices, like snacking on frozen grapes instead of eating 39490384903 popsicles. And really it's genius because snacking on frozen grapes is LIKE eating billions of popsicles. WIN.

I also did a lot of sleeping and a lot of watching TV and not a lot of moving in general.

Today, I was out of most everything. Carless me had to get out there and get stuff done. I made a run to the bank on my bike and swung by Target to grab some decongestants and tissues. Next up was the coop to grab some groceries to make some food for the week.

Currently I'm brewing up some ham and potato soup in the crock pot, a WW recipe I found online that seems easy enough and good for busy days. I also got a ton of vegetables for roasting.

This is always my favorite time of year because everything can just be roasted and it tastes like heaven. Brussels Sprouts? Perfect. Cauliflower? Delicious. Squash? Onions? Apples? ROAST THEM ALL.

I'm excited to get back into the world tomorrow and try to have a normal day, though Tuesdays are my longest and busiest day of the week, so not necessarily the best one to ease into, but best to throw ones self back in the routine, eh?

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Weighing In - 09/26/2013

                         09/26/2013 164.4 (+3.0lbs)

09/19/2013 161.4 (+1.6lbs)
09/12/2013 159.8 (-3.2lbs)
09/05/2013 163.0 (+4.8lbs)

08/29/2013 158.2 (-0.8lbs)

08/15/2013 159.0 (+3.6lbs)
08/08/2013 155.4 (-0.4lbs)
08/01/2013 155.8 (-0.4lbs)
07/25/2013 156.2 (+0.2lbs)
07/18/2013 156.0 (-0.2lbs)

07/11/2013 156.2 (+1.8lbs)

Guys. Look at this. 

Since I quit smoking in early July, I have netted a 10 pound gain between all the losses and gains. I'm so frustrated, but I realize that frustration doesn't help the situation. 

Something is not clicking. I've removed a giant pacifier for my life, and I'm clearly rewarding myself with food. 

I feel like I'm starting all over again, but with less gusto and motivation. I have forgotten everything I know. I've NEVER gained this much weight back since my initial loss. 5 pounds, sure. But 10? No. 

I might have to change this blog to the-last-thirty. 

I am committed to tracking 5 days this week, with a REAL goal of 7 days. I am attempting to plan my meals as best as one can when their life is severely unpredictable. 

If you have ANY tips for getting back in the swing of things, please please share. I'm desperate. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Weighing In - 09/19/2013


Something in me just isn't clicking.

I open my tracker every morning. I track through lunch and then it all goes south. Like super South. Hellaciously SOUTH.

I gained again this week. I would really like to stop this trend.

However, I'm off to a wedding weekend today after school. Long weekend with family and friends is a dangerous combo, though I am in charge of decorations and reception fun for this wedding, so I'll have a job and a distraction.

Best of luck to me. I apparently need it.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Weighing In - 09/12/2013

-3.2 pounds. 

Not quite taking off last week's gain, but it's at least a step in the direction I'm trying to go.

I met my goal of tracking 3 complete days last week, but it wasn't easy, so I want to try to meet that goal again this week. It's tough to get back into a routine now that my schedule is hectic, but I know that when school is in session, my days largely remain the same as far as timing of various projects go and when I can commit to a routine or find something that really works for me, it will be easy to keep it up.

I bought a new bike on Tuesday. Well, not a new bike, not at all. I got a 80s Raleigh Horizon mixte for $50 on Craigslist and then rode it by my local bike co-op and picked up a used bike rack. Then a quick jaunt to the hardware store where my friendly associate Floyd picked out all the hardware I'd need and even installed it for me because I was chatty. I didn't ask for help and I don't think Floyd doubted that I could do it myself, but it can be really nice to take something off someone's plate. I was grateful.

So now I'm outfitted with an errand bike to do my grocery shopping. I had previously sold the only hybrid bike I owned, so I didn't have anything with a frame that could carry a rack that could carry... anything of any sort of weight. I have a tendency toward pretty racing/road bikes. It feels really silly to be riding super upright, but it's also REALLY fun. I feel super tall, and my posture is great and it's a really calming ride for me. I tooled around most of Tuesday night, and all of Wednesday morning getting the things done that have been put off for the last 2 weeks while I've been adapting to the absence of a car.

I made to the gym yesterday: for real. I've been stopping by the gym to scan my card because I've been riding my bike so much more that I was using that as exercise, but now I'm sure I've adapted and I shouldn't count it as intentional exercise. I cranked through my favorite superset weight lifting routine and saw my new gym/school friend Tracy. We're in a class together this semester and we recognized each other from the gym, so now we are chatty, which feels great. I love having allies at the gym, but it's hard to start conversations that aren't awkward.

Since I was able to get some grocery shopping done, I've managed to start making my own food again. I had really been convenience fooding it for a couple weeks between my car falling apart and my microwave breaking. It was just easier to pick something up since I couldn't prepare anything super fast the way I needed.

This week I've made a quinoa salad with roasted cauliflower and chickpeas dressed in a spicy lime vinaigrette, sweet and sour spicy cucumber/zucchini noodles and delicious caprese skewers.

So this week I'll be:

  • tracking AT LEAST 3 days, but try to shoot for all 7. 
  • preparing at least 60% of my own meals 
  • get to the gym at least 3 days
  • shooting to NOT gain
Any new goals for you this week? I'm interested to hear tips on getting back on track, I'm having a tough time recommitting with this empty space in my metabolism where nicotine used to speed it up. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Weighing In - 09/05/2013

4.8 pounds.

That's how much I've gained this week.

13.4 pounds.

That's how much I've gained in 4 months.

7.6 pounds.

That's how much I've gained in just the last couple of weeks.

Quitting smoking is a drag.

Though I totally don't get what's going on this week. I want to suspect the burrito I had for dinner last night which was completely salty-rice laden for this morning's completely ridiculous gain. I had a decent week. I moved so much more because my car is completely dead and gone forever.

There was some damage to the subframe and a few of the bolts were stripped and stuck in the body, which basically made it a ridiculously time consuming rescue. I had decided to junk the car and was feeling very sour about the $300 the yards were offering, when Manpanion made the fantastic recommendation to list it on Craigslist and see if anyone would bite.

The car only had 90k miles on it, and it was technically repairable. I was completely transparent and honest about all of the damage and the hassle. I asked $1k figuring I might get 500 from someone's lowball offer. I ended up selling it less than 24 hours later for $600, which was probably the best deal I was going to get. The man I sold it to is a mechanical engineer (like Manpanion) and is going to tinker around with it as a winter project. He was very nice, and his last name was Carr, which made me giggle given the context.

So now I'm carless, which means I am riding my bike daily and for more miles than I was previously.

School is back in session which is making it harder to get to the gym regularly, but I am also eating a little less because I find snacking during class a little distracting. However, school is back in session which means I'm consuming more alcohol at Happy Hours.

I'm not in a real hurry to find a car, especially because we're encroaching on my favorite season here in MN: Autumn. I will probably try to make sure I find a good deal on something before the roads ice over, but until then I'll be perfectly fine.

Manpanion and I had the unique opportunity to attend a private Mayoral town hall forum on Tuesday night, hosted by The Growler and Fulton Brewing here in Minneapolis. I had submitted a few questions to ask the candidates and I was selected to attend (with a +1) and also to ask my question. It was a great experience and definitely gave me a swift kick in the ass to do a little more research about the candidates. I have been VERY spoiled with the world's most fantastic mayor for many years and I'm still a little bit in denial that R.T. will not be in charge of my awesome city anymore.

OH! In addition to my car, my microwave broke last night. Normally, I'm not sure this would bother me, but I am a busy student and I work, so I don't really have all the time in the world to prepare food. I'll do some creative assembling for the next week, and find someone to give me a ride to Target to pick out a new one. Maybe a red one this time! Hooray!

Not too much else is happening for me. I'm going to promise to myself that I will track at least 4 whole days this week, no excuses. That's not even committing to the entire week, and so I should be able to accomplish this. I will start with today.

Hope all is going a little better for y'all than the universe has thrown at me the last couple of weeks, but I'm laughing my way through it.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Weighing In - 08/29/2013

I lost!

It wasn't a ton, but I've had a rough week.

Classes started back up on Tuesday and I had my schedule programmed into my calendar incorrectly and completely missed the first section of one of my classes. Humiliating. Stressful. I'm a week behind now, but slowly catching up.

I caught a cold. My throat is raw and my face is pouring.

My car fell apart, had to be towed, and is currently undergoing more than $1k worth of work. HAPPY LABOR DAY.

But, I nearly lost a pound, and I've been slightly controlling my snacky habits with frozen grapes and baby carrots. It has been ridiculous hot this week in Minneapolis, over 95 each day with heat indexes in the 100s. It's a really bad time to be sick.

We are supposed to go camping this weekend, an annual tradition with friends. With my car out of commission, I likely won't be able to go because Manpanion and Oro are heading down in the afternoon, and I don't get off of work until 8pm. I had planned to drive down after work and hang out with the adults around the fire for the evening and then play with the kiddos for the days to follow, but now I can't get myself there. My shift is going to keep me in the cities for the weekend while absolutely everyone I know is out of town. Hooray.

So, this week was not awesome, but hopefully things will start to turn around.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Back to School.

Today is my first day back to school. I'm completely excited for the structure of attending classes and having coursework and being in a routine again.

I've fallen off track. I've been tracking, but going wildly over each day.

I quit smoking in early July, I didn't want to mention it in case I failed at it again, but it's been over a month now, so I'm feeling pretty good about this stretch. I really want to make it forever. However, with quitting smoking, I've picked up quite a few extra pounds.

I didn't officially weigh in last Thursday because I TOTALLY FORGOT. It is Minnesota State Fair time, and I volunteer each year at the Kick Gas! Booth in the Eco Experience building helping people figure out how to commute and get around in general without being the sole person in the car. Public transit, bicycles, bike shares, car shares, etc. Anyhow, that shift was on Thursday and I went out to the fair fairly early after hitting the gym and it just skipped my mind completely.

Manpanion starts his day with ice cream.

I start my day with Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Our favorite honey sticks from the Agriculture building

Quick MN Craft Beer flight from Grumpy Gus

Paul's Pina Colada from Manny's

More Coffee for me

Comet Corn, new at the fair this year. Flash frozen puff corn with cheese powder and goldfish and questionable caramel flavor. I voted NO. Manpanion loved it.

Also new at the fair, the dough-sant, a cro-nut. Wasn't that great. 

Signed my name on the QuitPlan MN!!!

 Our booth

Dinner thief.

pig hug.

Every year I get a delicious organic pork brat before I visit the pig barns to give thanks to my favorite delicious animals and the farmers who love and raise them.

We love MN Trees!


My favorite water fountains that tell you how many plastic bottles have been avoided by using your refillable container. 

Manpanion charming folks into considering alternatives to driving. 

My unofficial weigh in, on Friday when I remembered (and after a day of sweets at the fair), was around 161. So I'm UP up up, but it's a decent sacrifice for being able to quit smoking. I've used food as a pacifier for a month now, so it's time to get my head back in the game and try to figure out life as a non-smoker.

I joined a soccer team, unexpectedly. Manpanion joined one for Fall with an old co-worker and apparently they needed more ladies, so he volunteered me. I've never played soccer, but I do play broomball and the rules are nearly the same, except there are no boards, you can't use your hands and the field is 3x bigger.

Our first game was this last Sunday. It was 98 degrees at 5pm, and we played from 5-7pm in direct sun with very very few subs (1). It was incredibly difficult and I'm not very good, but I'm very excited to figure it out.

Atletico Borracho sharing the only strip of shade from a light pole on a 100 degree day.

I grocery shopped last night, filling up on vegetables and fruit and some easy to grab protein like shrimp and pork. I still have about 5 frozen meals from an embarrassing 15-frozen-meal trip to Target a few weeks ago in an effort to get portions back under control, and I've been eating frozen grapes to try to curb my desire for sweets snacking.

Any tips on volume food while I'm still working on settling nerves from quitting smoking? I'm not much of a plain popcorn fan.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Weighing In - 08/15/2013

I've fallen off the face of the earth a little bit, but I've kept up with my weight tracker, both on this site and on Weight Watchers.

This week, I've apparently gained 3.6 pounds. I'm not buying it.

It is  2 says from TOM after all, and I know we love to use that excuse, but I've found it does actually affect my body weight.

If I behave, I'll likely drop some if not all of this by next week.

So, it's been a while. Since I last updated, I've been on a cabin trip, had a birthday, to a wedding, on a cooking night adventure wine date, and just generally worked a lot.

I haven't been eating very well, but I also haven't been eating MUCH, and that's part of the problem. I've been getting really wrapped up in things until I'm starving and then eating one big meal. It's a habit I'm trying to break this week, with little luck.

I'm hoping that after the wedding this weekend, and no more in the immediate future until late September, I'll be over events for a bit and back to a routine since school starts in TWO WEEKS. Sheesh.

More interesting things to come.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Day Off.

I've been working so much lately. Saturdays are my only days off, and I live for them.

My birthday is coming up this Thursday, and while I haven't been in birthday mode in the slightest, this week I was inspired to stop fucking around with things that don't make me happy. I have to choose happy. I need to make my own happy.

So I quit that job that I dislike... because, well, I dislike it.

I wasn't really making any money, and socially I was miserable. The crew is a tightknit group of friends and they were just not letting me in, not at all. I felt isolated and lame, and it was not a fun environment.

I'll be done there soon, and I've left very few days for them to schedule me, so I can avoid the toxicity in the meantime.

So, day off. I've been on a roll of getting things done this week. Yesterday, I took my car in for 4 new tires and I renewed my AAA membership. Today I'm bringing the car in for an oil change and new brakes. I'll bike home from the shop and make a giant pot of atar allecha, my new favorite thing. (I like it cold.) It's also finally not OPPRESSIVELY hot here in MN, so I plan to take a walk with my iPhone and catch up on podcasts that I've been neglecting, as well as sit in the sun and finish up a book I've been reading on the train on my way to work.

Tonight we're heading out to Pizza Farm, so I'll definitely update about that tomorrow.

I've been tracking like a fiend, but I've been going over every day. Not OVER over, but over my daily points and the APs I earned for that day. I'm still not in "reign it back" mode, but I am at least being honest and not denying what I've eaten, so that's progress. I still feel mushy, but the workouts are making that thought process less prevalent.

Off to the shop!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Weighing In - 7/18/2013

Previous weight: 
Today's weight:  156.0

This week's results: -0.2lbs

Hey, a loss is a loss. This is really more of a maintain, but it's still good inspiration for reigning things in. 

I did track THE ENTIRE day yesterday, even when I decided to eat something that I didn't have points for. I still tracked it. 

I made it to the gym yesterday and today, and left completely saturated with sweat both times. I've been doing short bursts at the gym; 30-45 minute sessions generally, so I'm going to try to make them count because I don't have a lot more time. I'm trying to create interval sessions that are HIIT for all of my favorite cardio equipment and also make playlists to correspond with each thing so I don't get bored and don't notice how much time is going by. I'm also looking up some new strength training programs so my muscles don't get bored as well. 

On the cancer front, I got my biopsy results back: mild dysplasia, which could mean cancer... or not. No one has called to explain them to me. I'm sitting on it for now. I'll give them a call on Friday if I don't hear from someone today. But... how rude. Don't leave a lady wondering if she has cancer. C'mon. 

I'm headed to the chiropractor today. I woke up on Tuesday with some pain, so I went in that afternoon after work, was adjusted and felt much better. I met with a new doc that I'd never seen before at my clinic, so I'm going back for a re-exam with him soon to discuss reoccurring pain and see what we can do about it. Pretty excited about that. 

The co-op is next on the list, and then I'll be working tonight at the job I dislike. I found out that I CAN pick up another shift at the job I do like starting in August (which is VERY SOON) and I think I'll quit the job I dislike, but I always get nervous quitting jobs. For me, as a student, I just don't have room in my life for things that don't make me money, inspire a lot of fun/make me happy, or provide time to study, and this job is none of those things. Something to think on. 

Hope you have a great week! I'll likely be back to keep the momentum up. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Flailing and other downfalls.

Today is my first day actually tracking, and I'm only about 4 hours into it.

I've really been slacking lately, as I touched in my last post. I've gone soft, both on my eating habits and quite literally in my chub.

I've been back at the gym, sweating it out, though that doesn't count for too much since I can sweat it out just standing around right now, since it's 95 degrees and 95% humidity here. The air is hot, and wet and heavy.

I cranked out 30 minutes on the spin bike with my intervals playlist, which cycles between a slower RPM on a higher resistance gear and a super speed RPM on a lower resistance gear for the allotted time. Music really fuels my workouts and I love creating the playlists to keep it feeling fresh and inspiring.

After the bike ride where even my ARMS got sweaty, I spent a little time in the weight area working on arms and cycling through squats, lunges and glute bridges. I was done in an hour and burned 412 calories.

Burning calories used to be so much easier when I was really overweight. I could workout for an hour and burn 1200 calories, which I resent some times, but then I take a lot of glory away from the fact that my body is running more efficiently now. A fact that I need to remember when I'm overeating. It's like overfilling your gas tank, it just spills out... in rolls... over the top of my jeans.

My goals for this week, starting today even though my WW week starts tomorrow, are just to track. Just keep on tracking. Good and bad, track it all. Stop with the denial and get back on track.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Weighing In - 7/11/2013

Previous weight:  154.4
Today's weight:  156.2

This week's results: +1.8lbs

Another gain. That's 3.5 pounds in the last 2 weeks. 

Can't say I'm surprised. Yesterday I had a little outpatient surgery. Three biopsies and some polyp removal on my cervix. I've been freaking out about the procedures, and also the possibility of what that could mean when the results come back, so I've been eating quite a bit and skipping workouts. And since the surgery happened yesterday, I spent most of last night eating mass amounts of chips and guacamole. 

Now that the tests have been done and the results will be in my hands in the next week, I feel a little more at ease. 

I'm going to track this week, just to get back on track. 3.5 in 2 weeks is a big gain and I need to reel this in. It's been a long time since I've felt fat. I feel fat this week. Not in that all encompassing, emotional way, just physically. I'm blobby. I haven't been strength training. I've only been riding my bike and phoning it in at the gym. I've been tired all the time and stressed out. 

I want to get back to being pumped up, energized and pleased with the direction my body is headed in. 

Today is not the day for that, I don't have time to get to the gym, but I can keep my eating in check today. 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Weighing In - 7/04/2013

Previous weight:  152.8
Today's weight:  154.4

This week's results: +1.6lbs

Just as suspected, this week didn't turn out as well as the previous weeks have. I drank a little more. I ate a little more. I slacked on my workouts. It was just an off-week. It wasn't an off-week because I'm not tracking, it was an off-week because it was an off-week. I was distracted. I had some emotional trauma to work through. 

The highlights of this week, however, were getting to spend a lot of time in the sun, both at the job I hate, and also at the beach on my one day off this week. I didn't make very much money, but I did win over some co-workers that had previously been snobby and distant. I made an impression on a manager who has taken me under her wing and given me better shifts, so I can smell the possibility of possibly making some money sometime soon. Someone complimented my hair on what I thought was the worst hair day of the week. I started a book in the morning of that one day off and had finished it by bed time. 

My mother gave me an ancient spin bike that weighs about 700 pounds, and I've been riding it almost every time I feel compelled to watch TV, which makes me feel that I earn my brain laziness with body activity. 

Today is the fourth of July. Independence Day. 

I work this morning at the job I hate, and it is supposed to be very sunny. We are one of the only restaurants in the area that will be open, and there are only two of us scheduled with most of the city having the day off from work. Those who are not out of town "at the cabin" (as we Midwesterners say), will likely stop in for lunch or a beer before their respective BBQs. 

When I'm off work later this afternoon, I'll head out to my dad's annual BBQ/POOL party. I will likely overeat and drink too much, and that's ok. I work every day in a row for 6 days, and I will be on good behavior this week because of that regimented schedule. 

I'm not worried about it. I'm not stressed, and I'm not beating myself up over a gain. I expected it, it's a natural fluctuation, and all in all I am aware and active and things will right themselves. 

Happy 4th!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Weighing In - 6/27/2013

Previous weight:  153.4
Today's weight:  152.8

This week's results: -0.6lbs!

Another loss! Another week of not at all tracking, but being mindful and being active. The heat in Minnesota means I'm eating less, and a vicious storm that ripped through my neighborhood like a tornado (70 mph winds) took out my power for 2 days and ruined all my food. I tried to get things into a cooler ASAP, but I had been at work and unaware of the power outage, and then it was too late, and then the power had been off for too long to rescue much more than my condiments.

It was a chance to clean out the fridge, literally, and start fresh. In with the spring/summer veggies! I've been eating mostly cold salads all week with a handful of protein tossed in. Either black beans, chickpeas or chicken and sometimes shrimp. I've been biking around, I went running outside when I remembered that GymPact allows for "Anywhere" workouts now, and I've been working on house projects with Manpanion. Add 6 days a week of work where I'm on my feet for hours at a time running back and forth and carrying things, and you've got a pretty good recipe for success.

I know I could be eating less, but it's summer and I want to enjoy my time. Naturally, as more fruits and vegetables are available to eat fresh, this will take care of itself, and now that power has been restored to my home, I won't be eating what's convenient, I'll be eating what I want and what I've planned for (by buying it.... obviously).

All in all, I'm happy with this test of not obsessing over what's going into my mouth. My body has met it's set point. I could maintain this weight pretty easily without concentrating on anything, and while I know I could still stand to lose about 15 pounds (much more based on the insurance folks), I'm not sure it's realistic for me. I've given it a REAL shot, and my body doesn't like to move beyond this, and even when it does, it's a serious struggle to keep it off.

I've got new muscles popping up all the time, and I am really truly content with where my body is right now. I'm happy that I wake up excited to move, and that when I start to feel stressed I turn to the gym first because I know that sweating it out will move me forward (literally and figuratively) and that eating a whole carton of frozen yogurt (which I also do) will just make me feel like I'm sweating frozen yogurt in this heat. Which is gross. Seriously. Think about it.

Tonight, Manpanion and I are headed over the river to St. Paul to dance some Polka! I love polka. We are serious nerds with our favorites of square dancing and polka-ing, but we're so good at it because we laugh our way through and make up our moves and are pretty in tune with each other's bodies. There have been MANY times people come up to us and compliment our dancing, saying we look like we're having so much fun, which is 100000% true.

Can't wait!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Weighing In - 6/20/2013

Previous Weight: 154.6
Today's Weight: 153.4

This week's results: -1.2lbs!

I did nothing this week. I didn't track a bite. I didn't even try to listen to my body. I worked out a little less because I had other things to do, and mostly, I just didn't make FOOD the main event of my entire week like I always do when I'm focusing on weight loss.

And it worked.

And I ate pizza. And I ate birthday cake. And I went out and played with my family.


Flew kites.

We built a cargo net for the playground in the backyard. We drew the whole thing out to scale in coordinated sidewalk chalk and did all the math right there. We're awesome. 

Emotionally, it was a hard week, and this week will be no different. I'm not really digging on my new second job. It's never busy, I don't make any money, and I don't have much in common with the other folks who work there - or at least that I've found so far. Being unhappy with this job makes me desperate for really good things in the other areas of my life, which is leading to a lot of disappointment across the board. It was just a hard week. Hopefully I'm able to start turning things around.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Weighing In - 06/13/2013

Previous Weight: 154.6
Today's Weight:  154.6

This week's results: NO CHANGE. 


Another maintain.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Checking In: 6/12/2013

This morning I had my annual physical. I am perfectly healthy according to every single test, except of course the BMI scale where I'm still "Overweight." That's not news to me, but I'm starting to wonder if I can ever, really, REALISTICALLY make it into a "healthy weight" category.

I mean, I've lost and kept off 45 pounds, but I can't seem to budge past that point. The women in my immediate and extended family (4 total) have had gastric bypass, meaning we are predisposed to obesity, and I'm the only one who's kept the weight off through sheer determination and not by having my stomach sewn into a tiny pouch.

I'm exercising daily, and have been doing so for the past 6 months, and still I'm in the 150s, hovering around the same weight week in and week out.

I don't want to settle, but I don't know that I can try any harder than this and commit to it for life.

I'm not fat. I'm not unhealthy.

Maybe this is just ok? Maybe I just stay here and focus on stamina and increasing my strength and health? Maybe the new goal is just NOT TO GAIN ANY WEIGHT?

I weighed 157 at the doctor's office. That's with all my clothes on, so I'm interested to see what tomorrow's weigh in will say. I've been tracking every morsel this week, and I've had a particularly active one as well.

I had Monday off, and I dragged Manpanion to Bikram yoga. We biked there on the first nice day that MN has seen in weeks, sweat through 90 minutes of the practice, and then biked off to play mini-golf in the Sculpture Garden. We continued our bike adventures else where and basically moved the entire day. It was completely ideal, and I wish I had the time to do things like this every day, but alas... I must work.

<3 p="">

I've eaten almost every point available to me this week. I have 7 weekly points left, after having earned 53 activity points. I almost always see a gain when I eat all the points, but I'm a hungry girl. I've made very smart choices all week. I've eaten clean. I had ONE treat while out to dinner with a girlfriend. Everything else has been protein, fruit or veggie.

Let's see if it makes a difference. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Weighing In - 06/06/2013

Previous Weight: 154.6
Today's Weight: 154.6

This week's result: NO CHANGE. 

Maintained. Whatever I'm doing isn't working, because I feel that I'm restricting myself, which is probably just a selfish reaction to even thinking about restricting myself, and I'm still not seeing results.

Granted, a maintain is better (to me) than a gain, and it's a step in the right direction. Anything that is not a gain means I did something right. I wasn't eating the way I used to, and that's a benefit.

An honest account of how the week went would tell me that I binged a few times at night. I devoured an entire bag of Angie's Kettlecorn, I polished off two pints of Kefir Frozen Yogurt (plain), and ate a few handfuls of nuts while at work that I didn't track, along with some chips and guacamole that I also didn't track.

These things didn't happen simultaneously. It wasn't one GIANT binge, but it was nightly, a little at a time, I just stopped saying no and gave in.

Tiffany made a point a week or two ago that I should stop working out so hard and just relax into an active lifestyle. I don't think I can do that. My morning workout is something I generally look forward to, and it sets my day on a healthy and active note that lasts for at least 5 hours. I need a solution that helps at night, before I go to bed, which is when I tend to want to stuff my face so I can just fall into a food coma and get to sleep without having to think about all the things I'm thinking about.

Perhaps a better solution, then, is to find a way to (interestingly, not whiningly) find an outlet for the stressors that are sending me back and forth between bed and the fridge. A good rule, though, would be to ban food from the bedroom, which I've tried before with limited success, but it's always good to give things another go.

Summer hasn't actually made it's way to Minnesota yet. We've had an extremely rainy and gray spring. We've seen the sun maybe 1 out of 8 days as an average over the past month. It's pretty depressing in and of itself, but it's also not making room for doing a lot of the active things that these seasons generally bring to this state. Swimming, hiking, the like. I'm craving those activities and they're just not ideal possibilities when it's constantly sprinkling, misting or dumping rain.

The thunderstorms are nice though. Honestly.

The biggest change, though, is that I'm used to being EXTREMELY busy throughout the school year. Working, studying, attending class, writing papers, researching, and if I'm lucky, sleeping. Now that I have more free time, I'm definitely not filling it the way I'd like (spending time with friends, or in the sun, or exploring). Instead, the rain and general grayness of the city is keeping me in my apartment, watching episode on top of episode of the 7 seasons of Rescue Me, which I've already seen.

Something is awry. I'm lonely. Perhaps that's a key to the binging.

I'm not constantly surrounded by people like I usually am. I'm recognizing lots of attributes of acquaintances that I dislike, and would not choose to surround myself with, so I don't. I'm finding it difficult to meet new, positive, like-minded people. Being surrounded by sour-pusses all the time has turned me into a hater. I can find something wrong with anything, and I don't like doing that.

Time for an overhaul!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Eat Me, the Monday 6/3 edition

Alright, I have another 75% return day on the photographing what I ate before I ate it. 

steel cut oats with berries and banana. added 1 scoop of protein powder while cooking.

big ass salad (all the veggies about to go bad) + cottage cheese and grilled chicken. iced tea, water. nectarine and pluot. 

grilled asparagus and onion with roasted radishes and green pepper on millet with a poached egg. 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Checking In: 6/03/2013

I royally sucked at my photographing project this weekend. I mostly (totally) forgot to snap a pic of pretty much anything I ate, but I did take the time to painstakingly track every single bite, lick or taste. It wasn't very pretty, but it wasn't totally awful either.

We were working hard all weekend putting together Oro's Super Hero birthday party, which we threw 2 weeks early so we could catch all his kindergarten school friends before summer vacation started and kids start to lose touch a bit.

We put together little super juices, which were actually Gatorade, a huge step outside our normal, but they were super cute. Banh mi sandwiches became HERO sandwiches (we made at home and wrapped in parchment), and of course... the CAKES! We had a photobooth, which you can see my test shot, and Paul dressed up as a super hero. 

It was the best!

I ate a lot of fondant, but I tracked it all. I'm not usually a frosting girl, but damn do I love fondant. I didn't actually eat any cake, I just pulled all the candy off. YUM. We also had plenty of veggie and fruit snacks on the table as well. Carrots, celery, cucumbers with hummus. Watermelon, grapes, that sort of thing. 

The kids had a great time, the weather was fantastic, and we spent very little money, so everyone won. 

The weekend was otherwise pretty tame. I didn't binge, but I did have an unexpected high point sandwich on Saturday night because I stayed up too late and suddenly became extremely hungry because I tried to eat dinner early, and had run out of points, thinking I'd be going to bed at my normal time (old person early). 

Time is one of my biggest struggles with Weight Watchers. I'm unsure of how to fit 26 pointsplus into my general 16-18 hour days. I don't sleep very much, and that's natural. I wake up when I wake up, it's not an alarm thing, I just wake up. 

Being awake from about 5:30am until as late as 11:30pm, makes it hard to divvy up a normal eating cycle into three meals. That's a LOT of time to go between, so I snack, but even 3 meals + snacks is really hard to divvy up, and the points just keep coming. Even on days I mostly eat raw vegetables, I still have SOMETHING. 

This week, I work 6 days between my two jobs, so there'll be ample on-my-feet time, and it's supposed to be pretty decent weather, so I'll probably go off route and sneak in a long bike ride on my way home from work today. 

How was your weekend? 

Friday, May 31, 2013

Checking In: 5/31/2013

Alright, the first 24 hours of attempting to take a picture of anything I put in my mouth, before I put it in my mouth, had about a 75% return rate. That's not too bad, but I'm a little embarrassed I lapsed at the height of my motivation.

Here's what I remembered to snap:

Dinner: Mixed greens salad with asparagus, peapods, shrimp and dressed in a mustard vinaigrette. Polenta rounds topped with cottage cheese and black bean salsa.

Breakfast: scrambled egg + whites with shrimp and a small mixed greens salad

Snack/Light Lunch: cherries, apple, organic greek yogurt with berries mixed in.

Not Pictured are the 2 manhattens I had, and 2oz of proscuitto, 1/2 oz of chicken liver mousse and 3 slices of baguette I stole from Manpanion's charcutterie plate at La Belle Vie after our date night to the Walker Art Museum. 

I had a nice active day, beginning with a strength training session at the gym. This month I've gone WAY BACK to the Love Your Shape workout, which completely redefined my body after I first lost all the weight 5 years ago. It's a tough one, but it works, and right now I need something that works. Basically, you're working in SuperSets, which means you have 3 moves that you do back to back, 3 times and then you move to the next set. Not only does it tone, but it keeps your heart rate up. Doing this entire workout (if I don't wimp out on the extra set of lunges/squats/leg lifts I have to do for being a Pear) takes about 45-50 minutes, and I typically burn around 400 calories, which is pretty good considering it's not necessarily cardio. 

In the late morning, I headed off to my new serving job for more training. I ran around, logging serious pedometer steps, and then biked home against 20mph winds. 

This morning I skipped the gym in favor of a very very lazy and dozing morning in bed with Manpanion because I don't think we've had that opportunity for almost a year, so we seized it, plus I may or may not have been feeling braindead from the double Manhattan party I had with myself last night. I'll be heading off to my other serving job for the evening to rake in some cash and log more steps on my pedometer before scooting over to a RISK party this evening. Oh, I'm a huge nerd, in case you didn't know. Totally love strategy games. 

I'm going to do my best to remember to log my pictures and be mindful of food choices tonight, especially when I know there will be lots of snacky business while we RISK the night away. 

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Weighing In - 05/30/2013

Previous Weight:  153.2
Today's Weight:  154.6

This week's results: +1.4lbs

Alright, gang. I've gained 4 pounds this month. This recent gain is a combination of TOM, quitting a job, gaining and starting a job, and celebrating the return of my manpanion from a week long trip away from home.

I'd sit and make excuses, but I only half-heartedly tracked. I skipped a workout. I drank a fair amount and I ate things that were probably more points than I ended up tracking.

I am, however, extremely frustrated to have ended May with a FOUR pound gain, when it was the same month I made it down and into the 140s. Progress demolished.

I'm having a hard time committing to the program. There's some sort of panic built in around the fact that you've spent all but 6 points of your food budget before dinner. 6 points would make a decent dinner if one were inclined to be creative, or... gasp... plan. But for me, that sends me into a tizzy and instead of eating 6 points, I have 16.

I've been binging a LOT lately, on relatively low point food, but I'm still binging, later at night before bed.

There's been a lot of change going on around me, and eating has always been my stress response. I am worried, though, because I am still someone who works out at least 5x a week, but almost always 7x, with bouts of activity in between when I ride my bike to work, or go on a date to the climbing gym, or do laundry and run up and down the stairs in between.

I truly cannot, scientifically, see how this gain is possible - but that doesn't make it less of a thing that's happened. The numbers are there.

It seems like it may be time to start doing some realistic goal planning, so this week I will commit to:

  • Drinking a full glass of water before I start any sort of meal or snacking. 
  • While I'm drinking my water, I will take a picture of any food I eat before I eat it. This will cause me to be more mindful of what I'm shoveling into my mouth, and then I have a handy reel of proof if I don't track my food immediately. This could potentially be a HUGE bonus. Slow down, and be accountable? The whole point!
  • Distracting myself with hard candy when I want to binge late at night. (I am prepared with my GIANT BAG of Yummy Earth Organic Lollipops that I use to help keep study binging at bay during the school year)
  • Loosely planning my meals (which can be swapped around to leave room for tastes) and STICKING TO THAT LOOSE PLAN because it's a loose plan, so c'mon. 
  • Keep on keeping on with my 7 day a week gym routine. That's 3 days lifting and 4 days of cardio. 
These are all things I mostly already do, which is a great place to start making a goal list, because then you get to celebrate and pat yourself on the back more often, feeling all ceremoniously awesome. The binge trick is the one to beat, and if I can feel strong enough to get that out of the way, that will make a big difference in next week's weigh in. 

Now that I work 6 days a week, I'm moving around more. My new job is closer to home, so rather than taking the train, I just bike, which hopefully will have it's own pleasant side effect because it will be a regular thing. The set up of the new restaurant prevents any sort of snacking, just like the other job I kept, so the french fry bowl is completely out of the picture because I QUIT, and it felt good. 

Do you have any other recommendations? Say a friend told you that she gained four pounds in a month. What would you think? What would you tell her to do? 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Weighing In - 5/23/2013

Previous Weight: 153.4
Today's Weight: 153.2

This week's results: -0.2lbs

I'll take it! This week I did what a lot of us do after a big gain. I weighed in frequently. Daily even. There may have been a day or two where I weighed more than once (or thrice). Each day, the scale told me I was up about 4 more pounds from last week. All damn week I was hovering around 157, and I just could not shake it.

This stress, you know - the stress of possibly gaining SEVEN POUNDS in 2 weeks, caused me to do a little emotional eating, which would have made it easy to actually gain SEVEN POUNDS IN TWO WEEKS.

But I didn't. Instead, I evened things out and managed to rescue the week with a maintain.

This week was tough. I switched my WW Plan Manager to draw from my weekly points before my activity points, but this strategy mostly caused more stress for me as I saw that number dwindling. I think a piece of the swapping from Activity Points first that really works for me is the attempt to always keep or rebuild my Weekly Points at 49, which is the number I start with at the week. It's a personal challenge, plus, if I'm only eating the extra points I've earned, that should pretty much guarantee a loss, yes? It also motivates me to fit in extra workouts if I have the time, and I always feel my best when I'm working out.

I don't feel discouraged like I did last week.

Sure, I wish I had seen a nice, big, well-deserved loss, but I didn't actually deserve the loss this week. I binged on frozen yogurt. I binged on almond butter and chocolate chips. I binged on frozen yogurt smothered in almond butter and chocolate chips. I licked the bowl until I got every last drop, not even noticing the smudge on my forehead.

But then again, it's been a rainy bunch of days here in Minnesota. It has rained nearly every day with the exception of Saturday. The sun has returned today, and I plan to soak up a whole bunch of it before heading off to work tonight.

Until then, it's off to the gym to sweat it out and earn some APs.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Weighing In - 5/16/2013

Previous weight:  149.4
Today's weight:  153.4

This week's results: +4 pounds. 

W. T. F. 

I call bullshit. FOUR POUNDS? I stayed within my allotted points, I earned 50+ APs. I sweat my ass off EVERY day (literally) at the gym. In fact, I have been there the last 17 days in a row.

Something is up, and this feels like a freak accident.

I'm trying my best not to let it derail me and my motivation and determination.

So, while I feel cut this morning, I'm going to eat a healthy breakfast and head off the to the gym and keep doing what I'd been doing and hope things even out. I'm going to drink more water. I'm going to figure out how to stop thinking about this and keep my eyes on the long term goal of simply learning to eat healthfully, which I did this week. I will not relate eating healthfully to gaining FOUR POUNDS in one week.

I won't.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Weighing In - 5/09/2013

previous weight:  150.4
Today's weight:  149.4

This week's results: -1.0lb!


I'm back in the 140s, ever so slightly, but I'm there.

Thursday was a bigger day because I stopped at a local pub for a $2 pint while I worked on a paper, and even though I made myself a perfectly healthy dinner, I chased it with two mini ice cream sandwiches. 

Friday ended up being a perfectly on point day, while Saturday jumped just a tad over, with the treat of a big glass of white wine. Sunday ended with two of those ice cream sandwiches again (I moved them to the back of the freezer) but also involved eating a big chunk of fresh mozzarella as a snack. I trended toward higher point snacks that day which also included a heavy bowl of granola doused in yogurt. 

Monday reeled me back in and actually ended with an extra point I didn't eat because I just wasn't hungry, while Tuesday jumped back up after a birthday celebration for my dad. I picked my meal beforehand on the restaurant's website, but decided to indulge in a small slice of carrot cake after sticking to my plan. When I got home, I went a little overboard with snacks and consumed another 10 points. And the last day, Wednesday, I ate very clean, but still went over points by about 7. 

I ended the week banking 51 Activity Points and I hit the gym all 7 days. 

I'm so excited to see a loss this week because I really earned it. 

One thing I'm still desperately trying to see, with Weight Watchers, is that the Weekly Points are there to USE. 26 pointsplus per day is barely enough to sustain a normal person of limited activity. The reason the points are low is because vegetables and fruits are free, so you should eat those. I get that. However, to add a decent amount of protein to meals and eat my healthy oils and eat dairy for calcium and just... eat... food, you should probably divy up your Weekly Points to allow for 7 of them to be added to each day, and utilize Activity Points for big treats of nights out. 

I'd always preferred to pull from Activity Points first, because I wanted to earn any extra points I was using, but that was before fruit and vegetables were considered 0 points. I think I may change my planner to draw from the Weeklies first, now, to attempt to rewire my brain into using those because they are PART OF MY PLAN, and then use activity points for anything above and beyond so that I earn those bigger treats. 

A 33 point day shouldn't feel like I went "off my plan." That's still a REALLY REALLY clean eating day, I just chose to have protein at all 3 meals, and with the rate I've been working out lately, I kind of need it. So I will stop feeling guilty about that and find a way to make it work. 

Speaking of working out, the fitter you get, the less calories you burn and the harder you laugh when you walk down the stairs of the gym, literally blinded by sweat and see that you only burned 400 calories in that intense hour. C'mon now. 

I'm not phased because it feels SO good to be working out really consistently for the last 5 months, and I can see definite changes in my body beyond the scale. The scale has never been a good judge for me, so I'm focusing less and less on it, but I do still want to lose the weight. 

I hope you had a successful week! 

Friday, May 3, 2013

Eat Me, the Friday 5/3 edition

Oh I love cooking for myself.

Well, most of the time. My favorite part is just the having fresh, healthy food for myself.

Today I took the time to cook all of my meals. I had two runny, sunny side up eggs over quinoa for breakfast (no color, super unphotographical). And then I had...

Black Bean // Corn salsa salad with leftover spicy chicken (from the sweet potato skins) 
with fresh avocado chunks. 

Roasted broccoli and shrimp over quinoa. THE EASIEST. 

Another totally OP day, jam packed with vegetables and peak nutrition. I feel satisfied, energized and oh so good. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!