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COACHPENNY's Recent Blog Entries


Monday, February 28, 2011

Lately, I have been choosing to let go of the chores and even some things I enjoy to find a bit of escape in a good book. It's an escape, for sure from the everyday hum of living a busy life but also, a way to achieve a state of mind that has no connection to real world obligations.

The household responsibilities will wait. The clutter is patient, even if I am not. My jobs, don't literally come home with me but, there are always routine tasks that must be completed. They can also be put off.

My participation on Spark is usually well spent with logging and social interaction but, also a commitment that drains time. Keeping track of my nutrition and fitness are important but, only one component of my path to health. And although, I do enjoy the verbal sparring and talk of politics on the threads, I find myself very picky lately in what discussions I participate in. It's not that I don't care or that I don't have an opinion. I'm just seeking some serenity. I need that as much, if not more than the jolt of adrenaline that follows the jib and jab of political debate.

I certainly get enough exercise and social stimulation. My diet, while not perfect, is pretty darn good. I'm living a comfortable life, like my jobs and love my family and have great friends. I should be able to lose this weight. So what's missing?

Serenity. It's part of the equation for sure. We all live busy lives. We all have responsibilities, chores and commitments to keep but, how many of us actively seek serenity? I think we must escape once in a while whether it's into a good book, a walk in the woods, the sanctuary of prayer or the zen of meditation.

I've realized that I must actively seek this peace and tranquility in order achieve my goals.....

I need to feed my soul.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JSPEED4 3/6/2011 3:13AM

    Good thoughts. emoticon

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CITYZOZO 3/2/2011 10:53AM

    soooo it-- take what you need for yourself.. we could all use more of that.. too bad our society doesn't encourage it more..

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BRIDIE5 2/28/2011 3:21PM

  Important realization..serentiy and a life of balance are so neccessary to happiness and wellbeing!

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FRACTALMYTH 2/28/2011 2:01PM

    Definitely! Reading, for me, is one of the enjoyments that has been pushed to the background - of necessity - as children come first and I get obsessive about finishing a book :P But I do look forward to losing myself in stories again some day in the future. At the moment I find my serenity in exercise... it is my indulgent 'alone time'.

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The Hard Way To Learn About Food Science.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

I have team member LadyIrish to thanks for this blog. Her fantastic blog about lessons had a Doritos reference that made me laugh and remember.

I use to do taste testing for a major food company.....for seven years. Let me tell you, I can't stomach most commercial snack products because of that experience. Do you know how many different food chemicals it takes to make a snack chip taste like a vegetable?

I took the part-time job as a stay at home mom, when our kids were little, to supplement our income. The pay was good, the work was interesting and gosh who wouldn't want to get paid for eating snacks.'s not quite as appealing as it sounds.

Masticate and Expectorate were our buzz words...yes chew and spit. We worked in two hour shifts and could not possibly taste AND digest all of that CRAP and still be discerning enough to explain our thoughts on the developing product.

I was REALLY good at my job. I could detect flavors and identify spices with dead on accuracy.....because I LOVE food. But, Food Science is not about loving food. It's about fooling the taste bud of consumers into eating mass quantities of chips in one sitting. I learned things you never want to know about snack products and over time, I stopped eating most of those snacks.

I became a label snob. I would search for the product with the least amount of unadulterated ingredients or eat fresh and homemade instead commercially prepared.

To this day, it's stayed with me. Not to say I NEVER eat commercially prepared snacks but, I am choosy as can be, when I do.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUSTBIRDY 2/9/2011 2:28PM

    Thanks for the heads up. I have mostly given up these snacks, but this is good info to remember if I ever decide to eat them again.

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CITYZOZO 2/9/2011 2:20PM

    great blog

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It's Not So Easy To Be A Loser.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

I'm not giving up but, wanting to be a loser is not the same as being a loser. I have been exercising vigorously, have upped my veggie, fruit, protein and fiber intake and am working on the carbs. Still, no permanent weight loss this month. Winter has always been a hard thing for me. I usually gain 10 pounds and then lose them in the spring.

Last March I started on a new asthma medication (which works quite well) and since then, the weight won't budge (much). It jumps up a bit and I get it back down to where it started but, that's it. This medicine has no known indications that weight gain is a side effect but, I am beginning to think there is a relationship. There are spaces of time when I do not need to take the med and I start to lose but, I have to go back on it when the my symptoms flare and I'm back to square one.

I may have to check with the doc again to see what she has to say. Maybe it impacts adrenal or thyroid function. Or, maybe I'm just not working hard enough at being a loser. I've had success before, I can have it again.

Why can't being a loser be easy???

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SARAWMS48 2/7/2011 9:25AM

    IF most years you've gained 10 over the winter, but this year you are staying the same, THEN you are losing because you will not have to lose that ten when spring arrives. At least it makes sense to me. My goal every winter is to stay the same which seems like a major accomplishment in Illinois right now.

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BRIDIE5 2/2/2011 8:01AM

  I was on one for awhile that I swear did that..let me know what you find out! And keep on keeping on..this will work with preserverence. Soimetimes it take sthe body some weeks to get the message..

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CITYZOZO 2/1/2011 11:19PM

    i have no idea if this is right but in my nutrition class, the woman said that as humans our bodies always add weight in the winter and store it, do you think that has anything to do with this? zo

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KHELMAN 2/1/2011 11:05PM

    keep up the exercise have you checked your measurements that could be where you are changing

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Eating Out Again - Greek Night

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Eating out is never an easy proposition when trying to keep within the parameters of healthy eating.....calories vs. choices. Eating out two days in a row and eating restaurant prepared food that you LOVE, LOVE, LOVE is going to have an doubt there. So, my choice yesterday, was to limit my calories earlier in the day to make room for the Greek food orgy of last night. Not ideal but, better than just giving up entirely.

I also made semi-wise choices about what I ate AND eliminated one of the things that ALWAYS gets me in trouble when we eat out. BREAD. When I eat bread, I want to butter it, or dip it, or soak up juices with it. Even without the bread, there were carbs but somehow, I was able to enjoy my meal and and steer clear or limit the worst of the caloric offenders.

For appetizers, I enjoyed saganaki (flamed cheese), pan fried zucchini with skordalia (a garlic sauce made with mashed potatoes) in limited quantities. For dinner, I ordered fish....traditional, pan-fried codfish to be exact, sautéed with olive oil and bread crumbs along with boiled beets and avogolemono soup ( I brought a small part of the large portion of fish home). Had a small glass of Rodytis wine and a metreo (sweet) Greek coffee. Even with my self-imposed limits, this meal cost me a whopping 1078 calories!

Still, eliminating bread, choosing fish, limiting high calorie appetizers and wine AND eating very light earlier in the day made it possible for to NOT feel deprived. Also, I stayed within my recommended caloric range for the day. An added benefit was that I did not feel STUFFED after eating. BTW, we ate at a very leisurely pace.

The night before, Italian-Night, I ate bread AND had pizza (more bread with cheese and meat), a slightly larger glass of wine in addition to a salad with dressing and felt STUFFED to the gills. This meal was, higher in fat, had a higher carb count, less protein and way more sodium.

No offense against my Italian cousins but, even with a similar calorie count I think I made better choices on Greek night. OPA!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FRACTALMYTH 1/9/2011 8:20PM

    Well done :D

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JENKEN1998 1/9/2011 5:20PM

    OMG. I love bread. I just cringe when it passes me at the dinner table! emoticon on making some good choices!

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CITYZOZO 1/9/2011 3:59PM

    I can totally relate to this blog.. I love eating out,, choosing to eat lower earlier in the day is a great idea.. i love the term food orgy.. love it.. zo

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Feeling SMUG and then.....

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Well, up to yesterday I had a pretty good week. I was feeling PRETTY SMUG! Dinner last night....did me in, put me over the edge, hung me out to dry, added more Crisco to the get the picture.

I had a salad w/Italian dressing, bread, pizza and a glass of red wine. 1071 calories total! Now IF I had NOT had the bread and the wine(I could go to communion instead), I would have been at 740 calories for dinner and I would have been just under the high end of my suggested calorie range.

SO, next time we eat out...Oh damn, that's tonight!....I should eliminate the bread and the wine, right? Last night was Italian, tonight is GREEK...even worse for least for me. I LOVE Greek bread and all the good stuff you eat it with. So, I'm gonna have to figure out how I can offset the good stuff with the good for me stuff. I'll report back on how I did. WISH ME LUCK!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

COACHPENNY 1/9/2011 3:47PM

    PS. I edited this blog entry today because, after I thought about it, I'm sure I ate more bread than was originally posted. My bad!

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BRIDIE5 1/9/2011 9:09AM

  It'll're working it well for the most part. Wine and bread were (are still, but only in my head..) staples and beloved by me, too. Hard, but not impossible.

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CARRAND 1/8/2011 8:06PM

    I totally understand. We did Mexican last night and the darn chips and salsa did me in, and that was even before I started in on the fish tacos. I made up for it by doing extra exercise today.

So enjoy your Greek, and get to the gym tomorrow!

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SPARKLE1908 1/8/2011 7:48PM

    LOL...I feel your pain about the bread...I hope you do better with the Greek

Good luck but regardless you'll be back on track in no time!!!!

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FRACTALMYTH 1/8/2011 6:16PM

    Lol... sometimes I am glad I don't eat out... ever :P avoiding bread is hard enough at home!

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COACHPENNY 1/8/2011 5:22PM

    Breakfast was okay but, haven't had time to eat lunch today which is not good. I am going to eat some fruit and save the rest for dinner tonight. Not ideal but, better than the alternative of stuffing my face from am to pm LOL!

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BOOKWERME 1/8/2011 5:00PM

    LOL @ Rose!!!

Sounds to me like you have a pretty good handle on what to choose and where things went off track. I avoided garlic-cheese biscuits and french fries on a luncheon out this week...a first for me. It is tough!!! Now you know the choices for next time. I have no idea how Greek food works out, but I feel sure you will be mindful of the challenge ahead. It is late in the afternoon as I write..but I would have suggested careful planning through breakfast and lunch and perhaps omitting snacks today to give you more to work with for this special evening meal. Hope you can enjoy it healthily!

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LOVINGMYSELF101 1/8/2011 3:42PM

    Others call it 'luck' when you have chosen more wisely than they have. What is more, a woman creates her own 'luck'. I know you can do this, not by chance, but by decision. You are stronger than you think, you are in control.

My husband has a shirt that says, I'm Not Lucky, I'm Good! Wish I had one...

(((HUGS))) -Rose

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