Tuesday, October 18, 2011
So much for my daily confessionals. I swear I have an excuse for that too! But honestly, the more I think about these "excuses," the more I realize that they're not so much excuses as numerous reasons that my life is TOTALLY NORMAL every single day.
So Friday I was on track until hour 9 of my insanely long 15 hour work day when I went to get dinner, ordered a healthy turkey wrap and forgot to ask them to hold the fries. When it came out of the kitchen with those sexy greased potato strips of love, I devoured each and every single one of them along with the 2 glasses of wine that I believe I was OWED at that point in the day. Then enter skeezy bar manager who, though we work next door to each other, only recently noticed my weight loss for the first time and now believes that he has the right to 1. ogle my new body every time I walk down the street, and 2. make comments about my dinner choices. Which he did while I was trying to enjoy it. Him, as I am scarfing down my fries: "So is this part of the new diet?" Me: "There is no diet and I ran 9 miles on Tuesday, so I think that entitles me to eat what I want on a Friday night." What I Wanted To Say: "OMG, it's none of your $^%#*($#^$# business - get out of my life and let me enjoy my dinner in peace you #%$^&@&*#^" But I'm nicer than that. So I just ate too many fries and drank too much wine to wash his nasty comments and dirty, greasy looks out of my system.
Saturday was pretty good. I went to my Zumba class and loved every minute of it, per usual. And was totally on track with my food choices up until a late dinner with Nikhil (he made dosas - deep fried Indian pancakes that are made from ground lentils and meal flour and served with oily peanut spice paste - very dense, very delicious and only better when washed down with alcoholic beverages!) I was actually very proud of myself for opting to swing by Panera and pick up a bowl of chili and a bagel for lunch before meeting him for a study date at the library as opposed to waiting for him to make any food choices for us, because I know that he ALWAYS waits too long to eat and then makes poor decisions which I can't let be my habit as well. And as I suspected, our study date was followed by a mad dash to 7-Eleven to buy a churro to scarf down on the way home. I definitely felt like I won that one!
So as much as Saturday was a small triumph, Sunday was a total bust. My goals for the day? Stay in my calorie range and go for a 5 mile run. I didn't do either. We slept in and had a lazy morning over coffee and, yes, a caramel apple and leftover cheesecake from Thanksgiving. Ouch. Then came a late lunch at an Indian buffet - his treat. The food wasn't good at all (the authentic food he makes is so much better than anything at that restaurant and he usually makes it light and low fat for me!) and because he felt bad about lunch being a disappointment, after a leisurely walk by the waterfront (taking the place of my run, but at least it was SOME exercise) he took me to a chocolate shop to pick out handmade TRUFFLES for Sweetest Day. Oh lord in heaven. At least I didn't eat dinner.
Getting tired of my excuses, yesterday and today have been real, true, honest efforts at getting my act together. I made some really great choices yesterday - was on schedule with everything and even managed to fare pretty well at a work function last night. It's always really difficult to count finger foods, so I estimated the best I could and I actually don't believe I went over my calorie limits as badly as my tracker says I did. I promised myself I wasn't going to drink and held to that promise. I had a couple of finger sandwiches, a couple of pieces of bruschetta, some veggies and dip and ONE dessert bar. And then I got the heck out of there. Not only was I tired of networking for the evening, I knew that if I stayed, I would cave to having a drink and then I would surely eat more, so I did what I needed to do and extricated myself from the free food. Free food is deadly. Then, since I was in the neighbourhood, I swung by Caribou Coffee and picked up a hot chocolate for my beau and a tea for myself and surprised Nikhil at his place since I know he's been studying hard for his mid-terms this week. He was super cute, very surprised and very happy to see me (and the hot chocolate). I stole kisses for 30 minutes and then left him to keep working. A perfect little Monday night break.
Today has been good. I am on track again. And it's running day. I'm nervous because I haven't run in a week having skipped my run on Sunday, and tonight is my first 10-miler. But I've had my brownie! And even though it's raining and cold and miserable outside, I'm gonna do this! (Cause I have to. Cause I fueled with a brownie and running 10 miles is my only reason for being able to eat brownies.)
So excuses or just life? Take it as you will, but I'm feeling better about things. I can't be perfect every day, but I can be better than average. And I can deal with changes in the schedule as they come up. I'm learning how to be adaptable and I'm still improving myself. Gotta love that.
No more excuses this week. It's going to be great! Now - for that 10-miler...
Thursday, October 13, 2011
OK - so everyone has those days when things just don't go according to plan, but when you're already in a vulnerable position sometimes it's easier to make excuses for partaking in bad behaviour when the going gets tough instead of making the best of the situation and choosing the healthy road.
In an effort to be more accountable for my (off-track) actions of late, I'm going to start writing daily confessional blogs every time something goes awry in my plan. Feel free to pitch in your own excuses for why you didn't do your absolute best today. Once they're out in the open, they're less likely to eat away at you (or rather, cause you to eat) - and maybe you'll think twice before doing the same thing again!
1. Stay in my calorie range
2. Do some form of exercise to make up for skipping the pool yesterday
The Dog Ate My Homework:
Started the day off on track. I'm trying a new "Whole Foods" mantra. No - I'm not the new spokesperson for the grocery store (although I do LOVE Whole Foods), but I know that my body responds well to eating wholesome, nutritious and unprocessed foods - meat, dairy, whole grains, fruits and veggies. I had prepped lunches for the week last night and had my turkey pot pie packed and ready to go with a yogurt and an apple and a Skinny Cow treat. Not a "whole food" I know, but after the incredible amounts of sugar I have been ingesting over the last few days, I knew I was going to need SOMETHING to prevent the afternoon cravings. I had a healthy breakfast of an egg, a slice of bacon and some cheese on an organic flaxseed waffle with a cup of diced watermelon. Yum! On track and loving it, until...
I had to detour from my normal work route this morning to pick up 5 cases of candy for our concessions stand at the theatre. I usually never have to pick it up, but my poor custodian got his car stolen, so I offered to go over to get the candy myself and cab it back to the theatre. On the way out from doing the pick-up, my contact at the store asked if I'd like to take a sample bag of something back with me. DOH! I could have anything in the store. I chose a bag of "Mardi Gras Mix" (for my staff) and went on my way. Mardi Gras Mix is a blend of spicy sesame sticks, honey roasted mixed nuts, toffee covered peanuts and crispy rice sticks. OH MY GOD the stuff is ridiculous. How do I know? Because of course upon returning to the office with my sample bag "for my staff" I had to bust it out and try some. It didn't help that my delicious breakfast had left me earlier than expected and I was now starving. I ate about a cup of it. Down the hatch.
And about that exercise? I woke up today to pouring rain which makes me want to pull my covers over my head and never get out. After the ordeal of picking up the candy without a car and toting my umbrella and lunch bag along for the ride as well, I was quite happy to sit on my duff in the office today and do little more than visit the washroom twice and the water cooler once. Another post-work errand came up that I had to run with another big box to carry, so out I went in the rain again to hail another cab. Once the delivery was made and I was free of the heavy boxes for the day, I attempted to wait for a bus to take me home. Whatever it is with rain in the city of Chicago and the city bus system, I will never know. But the CTA was TERRIBLE tonight and it took me over 1.5 hours to get home. I ended up running a quick errand for myself at CVS while I waited for the first bus and then another errand to Dominick's to pick up carrots and celery for my healthy turkey soup while I waited for the second bus. By the time I got home it was almost 9pm, I still hadn't eaten dinner and my head was about to split open from a combo tension/barometer headache. Exercise is not happening tonight. Unless you count lugging boxes and fighting public transportation as exercise. Unfortunately, I don't.
So - those are the excuses. What am I gonna do about it? Set new goals for tomorrow and try to reach them.
1. Get out of bed 30 minutes earlier than usual
2. Do some exercise to make up for pool skipping on Wednesday
3. Stay within my calorie range
Simple enough right? We shall see :) I suppose the biggest objective right now is not to have to write an "Excuse of the Day" blog "Part 2" tomorrow!
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
When I eat a HUGE double chocolate brownie 2-4 hours before heading out for a run, I can knock out 9 miles like my arse is on fire. In fact - that's exactly what I did yesterday. I stayed within my calorie range for everything else I ate during the day and then proceeded to consume almost every calorie I was going to burn in ooey-gooey chocolatey goodness.
This is the problem with training. This is also the reason the scale hasn't moved in weeks. I know it, the scale knows it - but here and now is when I let you in on my dirty little secret. I'm allowing myself to over-fuel because it feels like as long as I'm not gaining, I'm getting away with it. But it has to stop!
I know I haven't been around for a while. Life has been happening, but my plateau has brought about an avoidance of blogging (though I still read yours and creep all your Spark pages frequently!) I'm definitely one of those people that feels as though if I have nothing positive to say or no life lesson to impart, then there's no point running my mouth about the lack of success I've been having lately. But the "No Boring Blogs" rule has perhaps allowed me a little too much slack and freedom and maybe I just need to buck up and get accountable again - or if not that, just vent a little about the frustrations I'm feeling over being hungry all the time and being able to do little about it...but eat.
So back to the chocolate brownie. It seriously is THE BEST fuel I have found for my long runs. And so how can I deny myself that little piece of decadence before setting out to tackle impossible distance after impossible distance? Tell me a year ago that today I'd be a person who could run 9+ miles and I'd slap you silly. But it's true. I can do it. And if eating the brownie before hand gives me the positive brain power and bodily energy (aka sugar rush) to believe that I can do it, then so be it.
But it's not helping the scale. And neither is pigging out the day AFTER the long run because my body is still burning at an elevated rate and I'm hungry like hippo for the majority of the day. And neither is skipping my swim night because I just don't have it in me only to come home and eat MORE food (which I just made myself track every single stinkin' ounce of).
This week is particularly bad. Because I just celebrated Thanksgiving over the weekend I have a fridge full of delicious leftovers - which for the most part are healthy - turkey, squash, cauliflower, potatoes. But with the healthy leftovers also comes the cakes, cookies and pies that I NEVER have in my house. I wake up in the morning and walk directly to the chocolate cupcakes and eat two before I can even wipe the sleep out of my eyes. That is INSANE. But that's what I've been doing. Thankfully, I consumed the last of the chocolate this morning. One less thing to worry about. But the pies are still there. I even tried to get rid of most of it at a work meeting on Monday. Still came home with over half of it left. I could throw it out. I could. Why can't I just throw it out?
So I'm struggling. Big time. But the good news is that I'm running my butt off and my training is progressing nicely. I can already run a 15K and my race isn't for another 3 weeks, so I'm going to keep training for a half marathon distance until there's snow on the ground. So at least there's that. I'm not just eating. There is major calorie burn happening as well - but only enough to take care of the extra 'narf sessions shoving pastries in my pie hole as I'm leaning over the sink. Sexy. It happens to the best of us I suppose.
I'm not one to throw excuses at bad behaviour (who am I joking, of course I am) but I did just go back on the pill and my hormones are likely messed up and causing some of this crazy hunger/eating. And there's the running. And then there's just life which someone makes me want to binge every day just for living it. Things are ok - but they're JUST ok, and I'm only capable of making change happen as fast as it will happen...which right now is really darn slow.
I really shouldn't have skipped my swim tonight. But at least I'm here writing again in lieu of the exercise. And I'll do something active tomorrow on my regular day off to make up for it.
My mantra has always been "As long as you're doing everything right, the weight will come off." I just need to get back to doing everything right again.
I might still keep the chocolate brownie fuel for my long-run days, but that leaves six other days of the week to make up the difference. I need to kick the sugar to the curb, refresh my system with whole foods and tons of fruits and veggies, and start fueling my body the way I should be and the way that I KNOW feels better than what I'm doing now. No more being tired all the time, no more sugar highs and sugar lows, no more being lazy about getting the proper nutrients to make sure that I'm NOT hungry all the time. My body has been running on economy grade long enough. Time to give it the high test and then let it perform to the max.
It's time to feel better (cause I'm tired of feeling crappy) and it's up to me to make that happen. Time to taste the difference between just "food" and real, solid, delicious, and good-for-you FUEL.
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Well - I did it. I officially launched the first phase of a new idea that I've been working on for a few months now. Here it is. Tell me what you think! And if you're interested and live in the Chicago area, PLEASE sign up!
SWAP/MEET! New Clothes. New Friends. So Much Fun!
Do you like socializing with new people? Are you in need of some smaller sizes? Tight on budget? Looking for a new exercise buddy? Just want to come hang out with some like-minded and goal-oriented people?
Welcome to SWAP/MEET! A monthly meet-up for Chicago area ladies (gentlemen, hang tight - I'm working on expanding this idea to include everyone very soon!) to exchange plus sized clothes, books, recipes, exercise, stories and friendship.
The goal of this program is to organize Swap/Meet parties for 8-10 ladies every month who want to meet new people, are in need of new plus-sized clothing, have inspirational stories to share or are just in need of a little kick in the butt to get moving again. No topic is off the table - these parties are catered to YOU!
Here's how it works:
- Ladies bring 5 gently used articles of clothing or accessories and a $5 administration fee to each Swap/Meet.
- After a short introduction of our party guests, and while enjoying some light snacks and beverages provided by the meet coordinator, the "shopping party" begins. Ladies will "shop" from the clothing and accessories racks, try on new sizes, dish about belts, hand bags and earrings, give each other honest opinions about what's hot and what's not, and pick out up to 5 items to take home!
- When the shopping has concluded, the socializing begins! Ladies will have an opportunity to meet other Swap/Meet members, talk about books, recipes, movies, exercise, significant others - whatever suits the group's fancy. Discussions and ideas will be gathered and moderated by the group coordinator to keep the conversation fun and flowing. Ladies should feel free to network, exchange contact information and start planning your next get-together with your new friends!
- Though the Swap/Meet will have a specific start & finish time, there's no telling when the party ends! New friends are encouraged to leave for a group walk, head out to a movie or maybe hit up some more stores for a full day of shopping. The coordinator will be available to help with suggestions or to assist in making acquaintances.
The Small Print:
- Not everyone who attends the party is guaranteed to take home 5 pieces of clothing or accessories. Every attempt will be made to provide an assortment of sizes and styles for the ladies attending the party, but due to inventory, personal taste and the difficulty with determining the exactness of women's clothing sizes, ladies should be prepared for the possibility of not finding anything to their liking or their personal fit preference.
- The $5 administration fee covers the cost of food and beverage as well as any rental fee involved in securing a space for the Swap/Meet. The $5 fee is required of everyone, regardless of whether or not you take home clothing or accessories.
- The 5 articles of clothing or accessories brought to the Swap/Meet by each member may or may not be part of the items available for the shopping party. Articles are inspected for damage, cleaned and added to the larger Swap/Meet inventory before appearing for "purchase" at an event.
- While the goal of Swap/Meet is to assist people in finding new clothing in differing sizes, the overall objective of Swap/Meet is the social aspect of meeting new people and making new friends. Members are asked to come prepared to socialize and have fun - the clothing is an added bonus.
- This is NOT a Spark-Only program. Please feel free to forward this information to ANYONE who might be interested in this program. Swap/Meets will not be limited to once monthly if there is enough interest to generate more meets. Think of it like a dating site for new clothes! The best efforts will be made to match people, clothing styles, lifestyles and needs by the coordinator. Anything can happen!
- Since this is a BRAND NEW program, please allow time for set-up and potential start-up hiccups. Thanks!
Ready to SWAP/MEET?
Interested ladies, please email Jenn Kincaid (your Swap/Meet Coordinator) at email@example.com with the following information:
- car/public transportation
- marital status
- food allergies
- desired clothing size (be sure to indicate tall or petite if applicable)
- desired clothing style (business attire, casual, fitness, outerwear)
- description (size, style) of 5 articles for donation
- any other information Swap/Meet needs to know
Please allow time to receive adequate interest in these events and the organization of the first Swap/Meet. The goal is to schedule the first event in October or November. I'm sincerely looking forward to meeting all of you! Let's get this party started!
Questions? Please email Jenn Kincaid at firstname.lastname@example.org
Saturday, September 24, 2011
I finally finished editing my Kenya photos. These are mine only and not the compilation album yet of my brother and cousins as well. Hoping to narrow down all our pics together into one MASTER ALBUM of the trip - so stay tuned for more!
For those of you receiving error messages, I checked it out - Spark is adding an extra http// into the address in some cases so if it's not working, copy and paste the link directly into your browser. That should do it!
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