Saturday, January 29, 2011

Snowy realizations...

I absolutely count shoveling as a workout. Man, I am still a little sore from shoveling on Thursday! And apparently, we have more coming. Now, I live in a condo, and I shouldn't have to shovel, since we pay exorbitant HOA fees, and yet, at 9 AM on Thursday morning, after approx 18 inches had fallen on our complex, there was not a plow or shovel to be seen, so I took matters into my own hands. Literally.
Anyway, the countdown on the job front STILL continues. I sent in my references on the same day I had my interview, and I heard nothing all week. I need to work so badly. My credit card bills are going to be due, and it's going to be them, or groceries. I think we know which will win. Successfully flushing my already crappy credit score even further down the drain. I know things will get better - I just need to start working already!!
Had my first Nutrition class last week and I love, love, love it already. I am so excited to be doing what I am being called to do. Something interesting I figured out is: I am uncomfortable talking about food in a positive manner. I think this is something I have always known, but came face to face with in class. When asked the simple question: "what is your favorite food?" I froze. My favorite healthy food? My favorite junky food? Food I eat now, or food I have ever eaten? I really had anxiety over this answer. The idea that I am uncomfortable having myself associated with food really hit home. As a fat person (almost former fat person) I felt very self-conscious eating in front of people, or speaking about food or eating positively (for example: "this (insert food item here) is SO delicious! It's so (insert colorful adjectives here)!" Hmm... could this pose a problem? We needed to get up in front of the class and give our name, major, favorite food, and goal. My goal, of course, is to open a weight loss and wellness center. I was even embarrassed to say that - I felt like the rest of the class would berate me (the fat girl) for having such a contrary goal. THEY don't know I have lost 150 lbs! All they see is this overweight woman... they don't see my hard work or struggle.
I remember in elementary school - maybe 3rd or 4th grade - that we had a Thanksgiving feast in our classroom, we did crafts, played games, and then everyone brought and Thanksgiving food item to share. When everyone lined up at the food table to fill their plates, I sat at my desk and cried. See, I was already the "fat girl", and I was so afraid of people watching me eat, scrutinizing what was on my plate, making fun of me, it was overwhelming. My poor teacher couldn't figure out what was wrong! And, I really couldn't verbalize it at that point. I just knew I was filled with so much anxiety, and it was because of food, and my fear of ridicule.
I feel like more of these realizations will rear their ugly heads, and I will have to deal with them one at a time.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Cleanse Success

Well, today is day one after 13 day cleanse. I planned this morning on getting up, and making myself a delicious protein shake. However, when I got up, I actually just wanted my oatmeal I have been eating throughout the cleanse! A while later, I decided to try my shake - and to my surprise, 3/4 of it is still sitting on the counter. It was WAY too sweet tasting. I couldn't even stomach it. I was so shocked! This cleanse has completely changed the way I taste things, the way I enjoy foods - good healthy foods, without processed garbage. It's truly been an amazing experience and period of discovery.
Now. drum roll please................ I have lost 12 lbs on this cleanse. That's right. I ate every 3 hours. I was eating a large variety of foods. No pills, no powders, no "magic". Just healthy food, focus, and a lot of sweaty workouts. That's what it's about, folk. Work. If you are willing to work, to change your idea about "diets", it will work. I am officially at my lowest adult weight. Yes, ever. I'm going to the wrap up meeting today, and I can't wait to share my story and success with the 21 other ladies who cleansed with me!
On the school front - my first class is tomorrow evening. I am very excited to begin this semester and dive into my courses. I am hoping to get a call this week with a job offer - so please, think good thoughts for me.
Signing off for now!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Moving right along...

Friday night - Day 12 of my cleanse. Tomorrow is the last day of the cleanse, but the first day of the rest of my life eating clean. I mean, this is the way to go people! Veggies, fruit, protein, complex carbs, dairy (a little!) - It's the whole package! I really love it, and I am even getting the hang of cooking all the time!
Didn't work out today. My plan was to do yoga this evening, however, this is the first night that BOTH of my boys are sleeping in the SAME room, and getting them both down was took a LONG time! So, I opted out for tonight, and I don't feel bad. I am still sore from my run yesterday, and I'll just have to push it tomorrow!
Had yet another interview today for my Yale position (notice I say MY Yale position? LOL) and I feel confident I will get a call next week with an offer. I need to start working ASAP. We are DROWNING here... it's really bad.
I may have mentioned that one of my goals is to run (fully run) a 5K on March 6 - HOWEVER - I have just discovered that there is going to be a conference in New Haven on the same day - Womens Health and Wellness with Dr. Katz as the keynote speaker!! I mean, this is amazing, and they don't come around very often. After a lot of thought, I have decided to go to the conference instead of the 5K. It could be a networking experience that I can't pass up. I'm very excited about it, but disappointed about the 5K. As soon as another comes up (I have my eye on the listings) I will sign myself up for it ASAP.
So, lots going on. Sammy cutting more teeth - both boys still getting over colds. Anthony recovering from carpel tunnel surgery - classes start on Monday night (ACK!)Things are moving right along!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I know, I know...

I SAID I was going to update you each day of this cleanse - but I have a VERY good excuse. It doesn't feel like a cleanse anymore! LOL. It feels like normal - a way of being - a way of life. Isn't that what eating should be? Not some costume you are putting on and taking off and trying another, but just you - the way you are! That may make more sense in my head than on paper - not sure yet.
Anyway - this is Day 10 of the 13 days. I feel really good. I'm getting through my emotional eating moments and I am proud of it. I have recently been thinking about the things I want to put back into my diet when I am done with the "cleanse" portion, and I think cheese (in moderation - as a topping, a garnish - not a meal!!) and my protein shakes will be making a comeback. The protein shakes are really important for me, because with this "clean" way of eating, I am not getting as much protein in as I need to be, but if I add back in a shake a day, I can easily make it.
Besides that, I am really loving how I feel, how the scale is moving in the right direction (I'm not going to announce my loss till the last day!) and I can't believe how my palate has changed. I really didn't like veggies unless they were covered in blue cheese or ranch dressing, but now I am making veggies in all new ways, and they are SO GOOD. Eating this way also gives me a lot of options. And when I am hungry, I eat!! Go figure!
Another fabulous side effect of eating clean is that it's appropriate and healthy for my whole family. This is the way I want my boys to learn to eat - Not the way I was eating 10 days ago, and CERTAINLY not the way I was eating 3 years ago!
So, in a nutshell, this is really a life changing experience. I'm going to get my butt kicked this evening by Ms. Tuff Girl herself, and tomorrow is another clean day!
On the job front - I FINALLY got a call that things are moving in the right direction regarding this job. I go in on Friday for yet another interview, and hopefully things will move quickly after that. Classes are set for the Spring, although I have NO idea how I am going to pay for my books, or how I am going to pay off the classes... but frankly, I can't think about that now. One day at a time, one step at a time.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Cleanse Day 5

Day 5. Hubby had his surgery and did very well. I planned ahead and was totally successful at eating clean. PLUS I got to try a Lara Bar for the first time (they are cleanse friendly) and I was blown away - so awesome. I tried the "cherry pie", and it was just delicious.
I don't have a tone to report. No workout today, as my toddler was a workout all by himself, but I'll be going to the gym tomorrow.
The hubs being unable to use his hand, I am on call for both kids for the next few days. Should be...interesting.
Oh, and by the way - totally ACED my Psych class. YEAH BABY.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Cleanse Day 4

They say that on day 4 - you see the light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. You feel lighter, happier, cravings have subsided and your body begins to thank you instead of hate you for putting REAL food into it. Well, it's day 4 folks. I am not really experiencing any of that. However, there are a lot of reasons for that. Things are pretty stressful around here. Sick kids up during the night = not a lot of sleep, sick mama = cranky mama, no money in bank account = pissed off mama, husband surgery = stressed out mama.. this is a mama that used to use a LOT of food to cope with the everyday. I CRAVED it. I NEEDED it. Now, this is certainly a day I would enjoy a Click Shake, or 2, but I'm simply not doing it.I'm not actually craving it, it's just HABIT. I am clean eating. End of story. Will a Click shake make me feel any better? Will it put money in my bank account? Will it make hubby be safe tomorrow? Will it cure my cold, or my kids colds? Nope. Won't do any of that. Frankly, at this point, it would probably give me the jitters, since I've been totally off caffeine for 4 days. So, in reality, eat anything unhealthy will only CONTRIBUTE to my stress. NOT take away. So, am I cranky? Yes. But, I'm not going to take it out on myself. I'm not going to put crap in my body and make myself feel worse. In the words of Christa Doran ( "Eat like crap, feel like crap, look like crap".
And with that, I'm signing off and going to get some more water.

Cleanse Day 3 - recap

Cleanse day 3 was a serious snow day. In fact, it broke many records for amount of snow that fell. We are surrounded by huge plowed snow mountains around here!
Anyway, the hubs was home and I took the opportunity to do some cooking. We ate really well, clean all day, and it felt good. I even got the chance to go get my butt kicked by Christa Doran at Tuff Girl Fitness! Whew!
All my Psych class work is done. I mean ALL. Now, I wait for my final grades to see how I did. My 2 classes start is a few weeks. Those will be semester long, on campus classes. I am looking forward to it, but it still feels a bit stressful.
Waiting, waiting, waiting for the job to call me. So stressed out financially. Actually have NO money, what so ever. I mean, none. This is causing a lot of anxiety that we are all trying to deal with.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Cleanse Day 2

Well, I have survived. Actually, survived is a little severe. Really, today was just as good as yesterday. I feel very good about myself. I am drinking almost 100 oz of water, and yes, I am in the bathroom all day, but damn, I feel really good. No caffeine, no dairy, no sugar, no artificial sweetener, no eating out, no processed food of any kind. I feel like my body is really liking eating this way.
I was really close to punking out on a work out today, but buckled down and finally did one. Muscles feel a little like jello, but as always, I'm glad I did it. I'm going to have a little greek yogurt, and that, my friends, will be all she wrote for Day 2.
2 Down - 11 to go. YEAH BABY.
I got a lot of work done for my psych class today. I actually submitted 2 papers and did a few other writing assignments. I have one more major paper, one more unit (with quiz) to get through and I will be DONE. It looks, so far, like I've done pretty well. I'd love an A, but I could settle for a B. Anything else would be unacceptable.
STILL WAITING to get a call from the office that I *think* I have a job with. I got an update late last week that they were going to bring me in as a casual so I could get in faster, and here we are, Tuesday over, and still no word on that. I seriously need to work. My bank account is in distress.
Just keep swimming, just keep swimming.........

Monday, January 10, 2011

Day one recap

I must say I am very impressed with Day 1. I had a pop a little Tylenol twice today, between the caffeine withdrawal (did I mention I'm going cold-turkey??) and the kick ass workout last night. No biggie. I was expecting worse. Much, much worse. I also went to the gym and kicked 630 cals to the curb in an intense walk/run/incline interval workout on the treadmill. I went in saying to myself "take it easy today, it'll feel a lot harder to run, since a lot of women reported feeling really fatigued on the first few days. But, I pushed, and pushed and pushed just a little more. I felt good by the end. Tired, but good.
Eating went extremely well. I tried a new recipe "spicy black bean soup" and it was hot and comforting and perfect for this cold night. I really enjoyed eating this way today. Felt good.
I had a few "moments" today - one was making a grilled cheese sandwich for Josh. It took all of my will to not pop some cheese into my mouth. But, I didn't. Not a nibble. The second was this evening, when I was really craving something sweet. I moved past it, and had another cleanse-approved snack. Other than those moments, it really went quite well!
My water intake was great, which is quite a step for me by itself.
Tomorrow, I am striving to actually eat a little more. I was hungry a few times today and didn't eat, usually because I was involved with the kids in some way, but tomorrow I am going to cook up a few different recipes to have on hand. On to Day 2!!!

Cleanse Day 1

Ok, Cleanse day one. My first sensation is that I am extremely tired. Of course, I didn't get a lot of sleep last night, but usually I could stifle that with a ton of caffeine. Not today. I am going cold turkey on it, for no other reason than that the only way I drink it is with a lot of artificial sweetener, which is a no-no for the next 13 days. Therefore - why bother? I DID take some Tylenol to stave off the headache that was beginning to lurk behind my eyes.
Even though I am tired, I am going to the gym in a bit. Sam is teething, which presents a whole other set of issues to deal with today. That on it's own would sometimes prompt me to eat in an unhealthy manner to deal with the stress. Not today. However, a nap later on might be JUST what the doctor ordered. I better take them now - I think I would get fired for that once I start working!!!
So far to eat I have had what I can Nutty Monkey Oatmeal: 1/4 cup old fashioned oats, 1/2 cup water, nuked for 3 minutes. 1/2 mashed up banana, 1 tbs natural peanut butter and a little cinnamon later, it was really yummy. And I'm not normally an oatmeal fan! That was about 2 hours ago and I am already feeling hungry, so I may have some carrots and hummus before the gym. Sounds like a plan.
I'll be reporting back later on any and all changes.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Ready, Set, CLEANSE

I know I have mentioned this cleanse before, and I am starting it tomorrow and wanted to elaborate on it a bit.
This is NOT some crazy juice-only-till-you-pass-out thing. It uses all REAL food. You can look at my Peapod receipt. I'm not kidding. It's just very CLEAN foods. Lots of veggies, whole grains like quinoa and couscous. Lean, organic meats, and beans. No caffeine, no dairy, no sugar. Yikes!
I know that the first few days will be the hardest - mostly planning ahead and preparing all the meals, and of course, the caffeine addict headache that will inevitably strike by noon tomorrow. I am very excited to expand my way of eating. This will probably not be the way I eat all the time (but, then again, who knows!) but I think it will teach me a lot about myself. How to push past being uncomfortable when I know just a little caffeine will take it away, not loading up everything I eat with low fat cheese... just to name a few. I know I can do it. It's the same feeling as when I am pushing myself on the treadmill - one more minute, one more song, one more mile...
So, I am looking forward to the challenge, and to the reward of feeling more energized, lighter, freer and...who knows! I'll *try* to blog everyday about the challenges and insights I face during the next 13 days. Should be quite a ride!
On the job front - things are looking up in the employment department. I can't say too much, but I expect I will be working within the next 2 weeks.
Finishing up my very first class towards my new degrees, new career, new life. It was a tough one - Psychology in 2.5 weeks - what was I thinking? It's not quite over, and I still have a lot of work to do, but, I'll get it done. There is no other option.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Exercise Tips for 2011

I went to the gym this morning (yes, WITH a cold) and while I was doing my run/walk, I had a bunch of thoughts I wanted to throw out there regarding exercise.
For anyone who has known me a long time, you might chuckle at the idea of my blogging about exercising, never mind giving TIPS on exercise, but here we are.
Something I have learned about regarding exercise is how to push myself. If you had asked me 3 years ago if I could run a block, never mind a 5K, I would have laughed until I cried. Never, in a million years would I have thought I would be this into exercise. But, being totally "self" taught (I've never really had formal training sessions that worked) there are things I know to concentrate on when I am working out. Today, for example, I have a chest cold. I knew this was going to affect my run, and sure enough, I ended up walking as well as running.
Was this session a bust?
First of all, I consider anytime I get my ass to the gym or up to work out a success. But, I have found I love pushing myself. So today, even when I was walking instead of running, I would focus on pulling my abs in, making sure I was standing tall and not leaning forward, and I also pushed myself in regards to speed. My normal range of speed is 3.5 (walking/warm-up) to 5.0 (running). So, today, since I was walking more than normal (no doubt due to my cold) I defaulted my walking speed to 3.8 and I ran up to 5.3. This is why I only ended up adding 2 minutes to my best time.
Some other ways I push myself: When I am beginning to feel fatigued and feeling as though I need to stop running, I try to make it to "the next". The "next" minute. The "next" song. The "next .2 miles, etc. Using this technique was the way I enabled myself to finally fully run my 5K.
So, for example. I'm feeling tired, and I really want to walk, but I see that I am at 28 minutes and 45 seconds. My "push" will be to make it to 30 minutes. I tell myself "you can do absolutely ANYTHING for a minute". Then, maybe I make it to that 30 minute mark, but I notice I am close to 2.5 miles, so I strive for that. So on and so forth. Suddenly, you've run longer, faster, and harder than you thought you could. It's an amazing feeling.
Proving to myself that I can do all I have done so far, I KNOW I can accomplish whatever I want. 10K? Half Marathon? Marathon? Sure, if I choose to.
Another important aspect of exercise to me is MUSIC. I NEED fabulous, exciting, driving music to keep myself running. Here is an example of my running playlist

Just Dance - Lady Gaga (warmup)
Womanizer - Britney Spears
Toxic - Britney Spears
Pump it - Black Eyed Peas
Hey Ya - OutKast
Girlfriend - Avril Levine
Single Ladies - Beyonce
I gotta feelin' - Black Eyed Peas
Poker Face - Lady Gaga
If You Seek Amy - Britney Spears
Evacuate the Dance floor - Cascada
Blah, Blah, Blah - Ke$ha

You get the idea - fun, fast paced music is a MUST for me to accomplish what I do.
Anyway, I am sure I will have lots more to say about exercise this coming year, as I learn more and do more. I will be sure and share this info to anyone who is interested! :-)