Sunday, January 24, 2010
So, yesterday, between a very early hair appointment and a Trader Joe's run, I called my mother from the Panera parking lot and said, "It's not a very healthy, low fat breakfast, but it will be better than the McDonalds breakfast I was contemplating." I ordered a spinach and bacon egg souffle (strike 1), a carrot muffin (strike 2), and a caramel latte with skim (steeeriiike 3, you are outta there!).
I added them to my nutrition tracker while eating the muffin and I honestly felt sick. Just for comparison's sake, here's what I was in the horrible habit of ordering at McDonalds for breakfast:
Sausage McMuffin with egg (450 cals, 27 grams fat), hashbrown (150 cals, 9 grams fat), medium skim milk caramel latte (220 cals, 0 fat). For a big fat total of 820 calories and 36 grams of fat. Which is really bad.
Now for the Panera breakfast:
Spinach and bacon souffle (580 calories, 39 grams of fat), carrot walnut muffin (440 calories, 19 grams fat), skim caramel latte (380 calories, 14 grams fat). For an even bigger and fatter total of 1400 calories and 72 grams of fat. Which is the worst thing I've eaten since a buffet Christmas party.
There were two things I could have done to prevent what happened. One is read the menu and nutrtional information before ordering. I know Panera has pamphlets with those in it. I should not have been surprised. The other is anticipate hunger, and rather than indulging in a restaurant breakfast, have breakfast at home. I could have made myself a scrambled egg and cheese sandwich on whole wheat toast for 360 calories and 16 grams of fat. Or steelcut oatmeal with dried cherries, an orange and a piece of string cheese for 413 calories and 6 grams of fat. Or if I'd really wanted breakfast out, one of the multitudes of diners/Coney Islands around here would have been a better choice than Panera. Senate Coney Island is just down the road and has two eggs any style with ham or turkey sausage, and whole wheat toast. It would cost half as much and it would have to be better than the equivalent of two and a half pieces of chocolate cake.
So, lesson learned. Healthy eating takes time, advanced planning, and education. For the rest of the day, I had a packet of crunchy granola bars, a Healthy Choice meal, an apple and a bag of popcorn. And I was miserable all day.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
So, this is the third day I've done the C25K week one program, but the first time I've done it already hurting. I've had problems with my knees for years from a variety of causes (skiing, weight gain, genetics). It almost always hurts to some degree, but I've gotten used to it. Becoming a runner is very important to me, so I started, knowing I might get sidelined with periodic pain. The crazy thing is, so far, the running hasn't hurt my knees. At all. However, I did the SP recommended strength exercises on Monday and let's just say, runner's lunges are not a friend to this new runner. It's not the weight on my knees that hurts, it's the flexing. It's probably thanks to 34 years of skiing. Anyway, despite a few misgivings about it, I walked/ran the program tonight. Surprisingly, my knees were less of a problem than I thought they would be. They hurt right now, but not as much as I expected. Which gives me hope. Of course, right now I'm really "pre-week one." I can do about three intervals of running for the full 60 seconds. The other three are stuck at about 30. I didn't really expect the hang up to be that I have no wind instead of that my knees hurt. I'm hoping that will change.
In food news, I've had a funny reaction after lunch for the past two days. I usually have a sandwich and an apple for lunch because I don't have access to a fridge and the line for the microwave gets *long*. Last week I was eating turkey and roast beef with light cheese on crunchy oat bread. This week, I switched to whole wheat, chicken and ham. And I suspect I'm sensitive to either the chicken or the ham because I get flushed and feel disconnected after eating it. At one point, I thought it was a sudden spike in sodium because I misjudged how many servings of lunch meat I was eating by about 100% (note to self- get a kitchen scale). I had a banana, a Diet Coke, and a couple of Tootsie Rolls (the first non-fruit, non-coffee sugar I've had in over a week). Just in case, I was covering all of the sodium/low sugar/lack of sleep bases. I still don't know what caused it, but I did buy some different sandwich fixings. Even at an actual serving size, 29% of RDA for one item is ridiculous. I found a brand from the deli with about a third that amount. And hey, if nothing else, this sodium scare has made me a little more aware of other nutrients. One more thing to track!
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
I spent the weekend with my parents in the wilds of Northern Michigan. No high speed internet means my "login and spin" streak came to an end. I expected that, though. I had originally planned to ski for a few hours each day, but I decided that it was more important to keep my knees feeling good and strong so I can keep going on C25K. (Then, of course, I messed up my left knee doing the runner's lunges recommended as a strength exercise by SP.)
Instead of skiing, I had a nice visit with my mom and told her all about the SP site and how motivated it's made me. I didn't have an ulterior motive when I started talking, but by the end of the conversation, I had a plan to inspire Mom to set some small goals and track them. Mom got two things for Christmas that she's really wanted for a while- a particular book and art supplies. But when I talked to her, "I haven't started it yet," was the status on both. It just so happened that I had given her a "gimme" spiral notebook and pen set from my company, so I asked if I could make it her goals journal. We had came up with three goals: read every day; draw every day; and one very personal goal. Then I put two weeks worth of check boxes under each goal. I also grabbed the book and some paper, a pencil and a clipboard to make it easier to start. Afterward, Mom asked me if she had to limit herself to three goals. Turns out she'd been slacking off on exercising her arm as required by her physical therapist. My mom had reverse shoulder surgery in September 2008 and is still doing PT.
I'm so happy that the positive changes I'm making have inspired my mom. Now I really understand what "The Spark" means.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
So, after all of the drive and optimism of Tuesday-going-into-Wednesday, the rest of Wednesday ended up being just... bad. Fast food and no exercise. Bah! I didn't do any of the advanced planning (lunch and coffee prep) that I need to do to stay on track and I ate way too much fast food. It was all just fat, fat, fat. I have to be more strict with myself and stick to a schedule and a plan. I know work keeps me busy and I sometimes get home very late, but I need to make more of an effort.
At the same time, I have to remember that a minor setback is not an excuse to quit. In the "You on a Diet" book, they refer to "You-turns." And I think that's what is called for here. Don't beat myself up, just move forward!
Thursday, January 14, 2010
So, last night I started Couch to 5K. I had put it on my calendar as an appointment, because otherwise it would be the same thing it has been for the past four months. I say "I'm going to start this week" and then it doesn't happen. That's one of my biggest reasons for joining Spark People. When a procrastinator bares her soul to people she knows, it's like they expect her to put it off. Bare your soul to strangers who don't know your pattern of behavior- and who are all in the same boat- and there's somehow more accountability.
I got home kind of late and was tired from work and traffic and I wanted nothing more than to collapse on the couch, but I had an appointment. So I fed my cat, changed my clothes, grabbed my iPod and went to the community center to attack the track. I'm very lucky because the community center has an excellent fitness center and good rates, and is about a mile and a half from my house. There really should be no excuse.
Well, I did it. Not well, by any stretch of the imagination, but I ran. I am about 80 pounds over my ideal weight and I haven't considered myself a runner since I was in 7th grade. I knew that my C25K experience wouldn't be as advertised, but the important thing was to try. I ran for at least a portion of each 60 second running interval. At some points it might not have been a full 60 seconds, but I ran. I started running six times. When I didn't want to run, I ran anyway, because some part of me wanted to and needed to.
I felt really good (but tired) afterward. Gotta love the endorphins! I did have a problem with a leg cramp going upstairs at the end of the night, but that all worked out. I've never been very good at stretching. The most important thing is that it's only my muscles that hurt right now. I've spent 34 winters skiing and my knees are prone to... issues. So I'll be taking it very slowly. I intend to stick with the intervals of each week until I feel comfortable with them instead of pushing on. If that means I'm stuck on week one for a month, so be it. The goal is to finish, not to rush. This is why I've given myself 14 months.
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