Thursday, April 29, 2010

When Exercise Feels Like Punishment

Today was one of those days.  I'm tired.  I went to bed too late and got up too early.  I had sixteen left papers to grade.  Gabriel's room needed to be cleaned.  German homework has to be done.  So, I ate breakfast, graded eight papers, goofed around on Facebook, cleaned Gabriel's room, vacuumed the house, made lunch for Gabriel, ate yogurt, and THEN went out for my run.  No wonder it felt like punishment.  I'm exhausted.  And I had to run in the wind.  Today is not the best day to be erect.  I was so tired and 2 1/2 miles kicked my ass...

I still have eight papers to grade and German homework to do.  Then I need to eat, shower and go to German class tonight.  Ugh.  Someone's going to bed early tonight...

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Get It? Got It? Good!

Willpower, that is.  I've had so little in my lifetime when it's come to food.  I love food.  I'm a self-described foodie.  I love to cook and bake.  It is something I'm very good at and get complimented on all the time.  Personally, I find it extremely meditative and calming.  Even though I'm still cooking (and baking to some extent), it's different.  It feels different.  And I'm not sure if it's different good, different neutral or different bad...

I definitely don't eat like I used to and am embracing the hunger as I type.  And it's hard.  It's damn hard.  It's a real testament to the willpower that I have so little of, or should I say, that I used to have so little of.  I'm glad I found the strength to find it, hold onto it and use it.

I'm learning that willpower is not the same as deprivation.  It's about making better choices and staying away from things that are counterproductive to the path I've chosen to be on (reminder, dear readers, this is not a diet).  With that being said, I still have an occasional cup of coffee.  I ate some kettle corn this weekend.  However, I'm not overindulging because I've learned the hard way that that just leads me down the path of indigestion and unhappiness - I'm looking at you, Astroburger!

Even the middle way for me is too much, so I'm choosing the path less traveled and that's okay.  I'm getting smaller, but in a good way.  12 pounds off at last count.  I'll step on the scale at the end of this week - I expect to see a couple more pounds gone by then.

In the meantime, I will resist temptation!  I've done very well so far (*ahem* except for the Astroburger, but never again!).

On that note, it's time for rest, another very important component of a healthful lifestyle.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Deliriously Sweaty

I probably shouldn't be writing a blog post after working out as hard as I just did.  I'm really high! I don't think I've even sweat this much before in my life.  Seriously.  Ever.  What did I do to sweat?  P90X.  It's like working out but X-treme - that's what the "X" is for, dont'cha know?  I did CardioX and it was like taking all of the other workouts in the series and putting them into one. Anyhow, I was jumping and kicking and punching and rolling around on the floor - whew! I'm drenched and my muscles are involuntarily twitching - ha!

I decided to work out inside today because it's "cold" outside - shut it, readers, who aren't in Los Angeles!  You probably have better weather than us right now!  I also wanted to mix it up.  I know if I don't do that, I will get bored and boredom leads to not doing anything, so I tried something new.  It was fun.

What do you guys do when you need a change of pace in your workout routine? Leave me a comment!

Friday, April 16, 2010

I'm Back I'm Back I'm Back!!

I ran my entire 2.5 mile route today with no pain - FINALLY!  I also stepped on the scale and since I started early March, I've lost 10 pounds!  Woot! Woot!

I'm feeling amazing.  I'm sticking to my plan, eating very little carbs, and exercising as much as I can.  I'm so happy, no I'm beyond happy about it.  I can't wait until the scale starts showing the next set of numbers smaller.

I have to get ready for a fabulous private reception at my friend's gallery tonight.  I'm bartending - ha!  I'm always the drink person and I will toast (with sparkling water) to my weight loss, my painless ankles and general overall good disposition!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Running Mojo Is Back! ankles are back online.  YES!  I went out intending to walk my regular route in my Vibrams, but I thought, "hey, let's just see what it feels like to run" so I did.  And although I felt a little tiny bit of strain, it was not pain and certainly not the feeling I had before where every step was painful.  Although, I did not run my entire route, I ran most of it and that makes me feel very accomplished.

I'm starting to notice the composition of my legs change from fleshy and loose to muscular and tight(er).  I have more work to do, obviously, but seeing some results is great.  What I'm really noticing is that my skin is so clear and smooth.  It must be all the sweat pouring out (I know, gross!) and all the water I've been drinking.  The biggest and best thing, though, is how this process is making me feel physically and mentally.  Although I don't expect that I will never have anxiety ever again, working out consistently and making healthier choices in food is really helping keep the anxiety at bay.

Tonight, Dana and I are going out to dinner at a pub which means that the healthiest food will not be served, but I've eaten well today, so even if a cheeseburger gets into my hands, it will be okay.  I won't have any drinks and I'll have water.  It's all about finding balance and little by little I am finding it.

Yoga...with Weights!

I've just discovered something that is really awesome.  Yoga with weights.  Now that might seem antithesis to the idea of yoga, but it's not.  Yoga is not just about the breathing, it's about the balance and strength you get while contorting your body into poses.  Why not add a little weight to shake things up?  It was only five pound dumbbells, but wow!  I will feel that tomorrow.

In related news, my ankles are on the mend for real.  I am going to strap on the Vibrams again tomorrow and walk.  As soon as my ankels feel fatigued, I'm heading home and will lift weights and work on my core.  I really need to get back to running, so I hope it isn't too far off now.

And I'm back to embracing hunger.  I gotta stick to it.  And I'm going to stop saying it's hard.  So done with that.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Learning to Listen

I think I'm finally approaching "out of the woods" status with my ankles.  I have been taking it easy this past week regarding running.  I've been strength training and doing yoga primarily.  Today, I went out for a fast walk in my old walking shoes.  I stayed on the asphalt and I felt good.  My the outsides of my ankles started getting fatigued before I wanted to be done, but instead of pushing through, I listened and shortened my walk.  If I want to continue this process, I have to listen to what my body can and can't (or won't) do.  Pushing myself too hard is going to keep me from accomplishing what I want and that's just self-defeating.

I have the week off from work - spring break woo-hoo!  I am going to be able to spend the time strengthening my ankles, little by little this time.  I will listen and heed my body's call when it says, "enough."

I'm determined more now than ever.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

This week has been interesting to say the least. I've been battling cravings (see my last post) and I've been trying to take it easy, meaning no running, to get my ankles to stop hurting. I am getting impatient on the second one since I really need a good run. Anyway, Wednesday night was Getty College Night which means free entrance, great art, and free food. The food is always good. A friend of mine who I have been going to advice about running told me that he eats "regularly" once a week when he's out with friends. I decided to apply this principle at the Getty. The good thing is that I chose the sweet potato fries instead of the regular fries, I ate grilled veggies, but I also had a spicy Italian sausage. I didn't even see where they had dessert, so I managed to stay away from that.  

I have had coffee twice this week as I just have been dragging: doing taxes, grading exams, working, going to class, dealing with the everyday of household stuff, and getting the kids where they need to go - whew! Exhausting. However, I don't drink coffee every morning like I used to, oh, and most importantly, I avoided the delicious looking banana chocolate chip coffee cake calling my name at Starbucks. It's all about balance people! Today is Gabriel's birthday party. I will be having a piece of chocolate cake and a little ice cream, but after today, I will be staying away from it.

Hopefully, I will get back in the groove of running very soon as I think it helps in keeping the cravings down. Upwards and onwards...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Now It's Hard

Ugh.  Cravings galore.  Hunger.  Must... persevere!!  This is not the fun part.  I am still motivated, but I really, really, really want food I'm not supposed to be eating.  Those potatoes I made for Easter?  Yep, they're calling my name.  I didn't eat many of them on Easter and I did have a small portion today.  It's a gateway drug and I must resist.  Embracing the hunger....resisting the cheesy, creamy potatoes...  I think I'll go have a glass of water...


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Patience Is Not My Virtue

This is not entirely true because when it comes to small children, I have patience like a saint.  But when it comes to myself and what I want for myself, like losing weight, I want it and like yesterday.

Where did this animosity come from?  The fitting rooms at H&M, that's where.  After checking out the iPad at the mall, I sent the kids to the indoor play space and went up to H&M, my favorite store.  They had more $13 dresses that I simply had to try on and a buy one get one free offer on select blouses.  Who's going to pass that up?  Not this girl.  Anyway, fast forward to the fitting room... I had success with what I chose, but looking in the mirror gave me a sobering glance at what still needs to happen to make me look my absolute best.  It was disheartening, to say the least.  I mean, my self-confidence is still intact, but I just want to look the way I want to look now. Screw the phrase, "good things come to those who wait."  I want it now.

I guess what I need to do is to have more determination and faith that it will happen, that I have to be patient.  I need to learn to have patience with myself and the process.  I've done this before and it works, but for some reason it seems harder now.  Faulty memory?  Perhaps, and I can only live in the present and not dwell on how it was in the past or how it might be in the future.  How zen of me - ha!

Keeping the faith... and going out for a walk!

Friday, April 2, 2010

I Don't Miss Bread

Shocking, I know.  I was talking to my sister (have you checked out her blog yet?  Lynn's Weigh - it's listed with the blogs in the bottom right corner) yesterday and I told her that bread just makes me feel heavy.  I've had some since I started this new nutritional eating plan and it just sits in my stomach like a rock.  Fact is, we don't digest things like bread very well.  Huh.  I guess I just had to figure that out for myself.  I cannot express how happy I am about this revelation since I thought for sure I wouldn't be able to stay away from it, thus sabotaging my plan.

Now this is not to say that I don't eat any carbs because I do, but things like brown rice, beans and the natural sugar in fruit.  Speaking of which, I stayed entirely away from Gabriel's birthday cake.  I didn't even lick my fingers after getting frosting on them.  The reason?  The cake simply did not look appetizing.  I had fresh pineapple with dinner and I thought I was going to go into sugar shock it was so sweet.  I was satiated and definitely didn't need or want the white sugar in that store-bought cake.

What it boils down to is listening to what your body really needs.  Your body does not desire white sugar, white flour, dairy, or processed food.  Our culture tells us we want it, but we really don't.  We were not built to digest this kind of stuff.  Now, I'm no expert and I'm definitely not telling anyone what to do, but try nutritional eating for a week and see how you feel.  No bread, no processed food, nothing with white (processed) sugar in it, and no dairy (organic yogurt being the exception) allowed.  Try eating lots of leafy greens (salads), lean protein (fish, white meat chicken, egg whites, and lean beef like flank steak), beans, brown rice and fruit.  And learn how to embrace that true hungry feeling.  I'm telling you, I am a convert.  It took a while for me to get here, but again, the proof is in the putting.  I feel really good and wish everyone could feel the same.

Here's to your health!