OPTIMIST1948   27,277
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Nutritional Stupidity

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Usually when someone starts a blog with that title, its followed by "I ate the whole pizza!" or some similar tale of excess.

No, in my case, I didnt eat enough of the right things and have spent the previous 18 hours paying for it. I want to share my cautionary tale because, this isnt a confessional, but an opportunity for you to learn from my mistakes.

So what did I eat Sunday that made me feel so strong and good? Breakfast was a 1.5 cup of fruit salad, 6oz of raspberry yogurt, a biscotti* & tea. About 350 calories with a good hit of protein from the yogurt. Some refined flour in the biscotti but loads of "good" if simple carbs in the fruit. I drank from my water bottle during my time on the bike.

What did I eat Monday to make me feel so lousy? I knew I was going to go for the Personal Tri on Monday. But the grocery fortunes were against me. No milk, no eggs in the house. I decided to eat a portion of the leftover linguini with clam sauce*. It was a generous cup portion along with a cup of black tea. This is mistake #1, NOT ENOUGH FUEL. A bit of white pasta and a tablespoon or so of protein? Maybe 250 calories.

(Yes, I know Italian Leftovers* are not everyone's idea of a good time. I can and do eat anything for breakfast.)

So off I barrel to the gym, full of piss and vinegar determined to see this thing through. On the way there, I realize that I have also forgotten my water bottle. Do I turn back and risk not making it to the pool on time? Bah! They have water fountains. I'll be fine. This is mistake #2, HYDRATION. Yes, I drank in the transitions, but its not enough.

After finishing, I wobbled home, ate like crazy; I just never seemed to feel FULL. I drank water like crazy but I couldnt move for lack of energy and ended up falling asleep about an hour before my usual time.

Today I spent a good chunk of the morning struggling to move. This isnt soreness - I wasnt sore at all surprisingly. But this is just bone-weary. I finally started feeling normal after lunch today. All my Monday nutrition numbers were fine, (except fiber -really struggling to fit that in) but clearly, I was "off" for the rest of the day. Depleted. In a bad way, not a good way.

It clearly says at the bottom of the fitness tracker that not eating enough can actually derail your weightloss efforts. I've heard before about the importance of proper nutrition, but having now been through it, I can TESTIFY. What I did was STUPID. Drink your water, eat good, nutritious food. Yes, you started this journey to lose weight, but in the end, its to GAIN your health. I did not feel healthy!

I've learned my lesson. No more 2hr workouts without the proper fuel & water! I'll be doing a bit more personal experimentation to see what works for me on contest days. Feel free to give suggestions. My dear friend Raina is sending some Nunn's Hydration Fuel and I'm going to try some of those Sports Drinks that I have previously made fun of. Obviously, my training & fitness experience is different from everyone else's. Blah, blah, blah.

Diets are simple. "Eat Right And Exercise." Remember that. Dont be nutritionally stupid like me.

* I went to Arthur Avenue/ Little Italy in the Bronx a few days before.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

XRSIZE18 3/30/2012 2:03AM

    I love this blog. So many people think that eating tiny portions or not eating at all will make you lose weight when it's actually the exact opposite! That's why I love Sparkpeople because it focuses on overall all health and nutrition - not some crazy, whack-a-mole diet plan.

Glad to see you realize where you went wrong and are well on the road to not repeating the same mistake twice. :)

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RAINA413 3/28/2012 9:52AM

    Every experience is a learning experience and I truly appreciate you sharing that with me because I can learn from it as well. As for hydration, I have something for you to try for your tri. It's called Nuuns and they are these little fizzy tabs full of electrolytes. While they won't load you up in the carbs you need to keep you powered while running, biking and swimming, they will at least keep you feeling human!

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CINERICIA 3/28/2012 9:36AM

    We're always learning. Good for you for taking the time to figure out what works for you and what doesn't. And, so you don't feel like the odd girl out, I love leftover Italian for breakfast. Especially leftover lasagna. Yum.

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ARADNE 3/28/2012 8:45AM

    I'm learning this lesson too- I can't eat just a packet of oatmeal for lunch and expect to have a full-force run before dinner. Before Spark People I never made a connection between what I ate and the energy I felt (or didn't feel.)

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YDAVIS23 3/28/2012 5:40AM

    Hmm... interesting post. A lot to think about for those of us who are going to push it on the fitness. Take care!

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MISSIFISH 3/27/2012 10:32PM

    Isn't it amazing when you can see evidence of all those nutritional rules you hear about? I'm so sorry you were depleted and uncomfy, but I'm glad you know why and can do something about it.

Feel better!

Didn't I see you post about a job-type thing??? Are you going to spill the details or just keep me guessing???

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DOGLADY13 3/27/2012 9:26PM

    Live and learn.

The day I did my personal sprint tri, I couldn't get enough to eat. I don't ever remember eating as much as I did that day. I did make healthy choices that day: lots of fiber, vegetables, fruit, fish, rice, cheese. I'd like to suggest making good choices the tday before helps, too.

Don't let this derail you or take away from your accomplishment. You have a lot to brag about.

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DIY Sprint Tri - I Almost Died. But instead I was stubborn.

Monday, March 26, 2012

I had a great workout on Sunday. Decided to hit the stationary bike at the gym. Did my 45 min, which as previously blogged is my time marker for 12 miles since the bike doesnt have any readouts. Then, since I was tired but feeling good I decided to go for a Brick.

A brick, as I understand it, is when you go straight from bike to running, just as in a triathlon. It is called a brick because when you start, it feels like your legs are tied to bricks. Attractive image, no? So I decided my personal strategy for dealing with this transition is to walk first to get the rhythm and then move into running.

I felt strong and good on Sunday. It was great. Core engaged, arms relaxed, running easy. Sadly I had to leave before finishing the 5K, time constraints and whatnot. But I was feeling STRONG.

So today (Monday) I decided to go "all in"
Swim: 25 min, 750 meters (I think, I may have lost track at one point so I did an extra 50m, just to be sure, so it might have been 800m) I did crawl on the forward and backstroke on the back.
Bike: The aformentioned 45 minutes on the stationary cycle. Kelly Ripa was looking particularly perky today. I was doing a couple one-leg drills during it, both to relieve boredom and let one leg at a time rest.
Run: 40 min. This is where I ran out of gas. I had a crappy breakfast this morning which may have contributed. I had to walk much more than I would like normally, but this was on the tail-end of the other two so I couldnt beat myself up much more than I already had.

As I'm on the treadmill, the thought kept running/ walking through my mind "you could quit. Nobody would accuse you of shirking. You did the pool and bike. You know you feel this way because of the crappy breakfast. Or possibly because you forgot your water bottle." But no, I decided to be stubborn and finish the 3.2 miles, just to see if I could. No matter how much I had to walk.

From the time I stepped into the pool to the time I wobbled off the treadmill, was exactly 2 hours. I had a 7 min break between pool and bike for a rinse and to put on sneakers. (And a friendly chat) And there was a 3 min break between bike and run to put on my jogging bra. As I type this I am eating a banana with peanut butter and drinking a glass of water before taking a real shower.

So what have I learned:
1) Yes, I can do this
2) Proper nutrition is paramount
3) Hydration is vital
4) At a certain point, its not about muscle power, its willpower.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IRISHF 3/29/2012 8:47PM

    I heard while watching the Tour de France one year that "bricks" is "pedaling bricks"...i.e., feels like your legs are going in square shapes instead of round and round smoothly and efficiently. The announcers were talking about it. Also called "pedaling squares", which reminds me of this hilarious video you might like to see since you're cycling and got a new bike! :)


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YDAVIS23 3/27/2012 7:21PM

    I'm with Missfish and some of the others. Are you serious!?!!? I can't compete with you and doglady... you two are animals.

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CINERICIA 3/27/2012 2:12PM

    Fantastic. Sometimes I have difficulty convincing myself to do ST and cardio in the same day, so I am truly inspired by your stubbornness. And I'm guessing what they say about distance running applies equally to tris--it is a mental sport. Your mind will give out on you before your body will. Good job not listening to the devil on your shoulder and pulling through.

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MISSIFISH 3/27/2012 8:52AM

    I am dumfounded. I can't even conceive of anything like this in my world. I'm so impressed and so excited for you!!!

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DOGLADY13 3/26/2012 9:30PM

    You go girl! It's not as bad as you think it will be. You make the swimming sound so easy. One day I'll be there. And you are absolutely correct - the biggest battle is in your head, not in your legs. Wow! That is so cool that you did a personal sprint tri.

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MOM2FAT1 3/26/2012 3:35PM

    emoticon You did it

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KANDOBELLA 3/26/2012 1:10PM

    Congratulations for sticking with it! Teach that brain that you don't give up!!!

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VENISEW1 3/26/2012 11:52AM


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RAINA413 3/26/2012 11:40AM

    WOW!!! I am in awe of your determination and abilities!! You are SuperWoman!!! I am seriously impressed and VERY VERY proud of you!!! (and you should be too!)

Breakfast is important as is water, but one thing I have found helps me is electrolytes. Gatorade is disgusting (at least it makes me want to gag during ingestion...it's just too sweet) but I have recently discovered Nunns which are these tablets you break in half...kinda looks like a Tums. You drop half into your water bottle and let it fizz while it dissolves. Then drink whenever you are ready. It totally helps you get that extra something..not quite a second wind, but I did a 10 mile run over the weekend with these and didn't feel like I wanted to die. I will send you some if you want to try them before your tri...just email me and let me know.

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Big Brother is Watching

Saturday, March 24, 2012

I found a curious piece of spam in my inbox today. It was for the Palm Beach Triathlon.

The Internets are watching me!

(DH said that he wouldn't mind going if it was in the middle of winter.)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RAINA413 3/28/2012 9:53AM

    Heck! I'd go and cheer you on if it was in the dead of winter!!!!

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RAE_LEIGH22 3/26/2012 7:18AM


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MISSIFISH 3/24/2012 1:04PM

    ohmygoodness you are so brave to just consider this!

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CINERICIA 3/24/2012 9:52AM

    Yes. All my laptop ads are tailored to my browsing history. It should bother me. But I love that when I type "everyone hates m" in my search bar, google clearly knows I'm looking for "everyone hates matt smith." (That's not a very nice example. But it is the most recent one. I was explaining the reason we are more likely to watch DT Doctor Who than MS Doctor Who to someone who has never seen Doctor Who. Sidenote...I didn't even know such people existed.) Wow. That was quite a tangent.

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Chicago Report

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Here is the results of my Chicago Trip

Of note: while I did precious little "exercise", there was alot of tourist/museum slow walking. I also managed to keep up with tracking and was either within or just over on my calories. I was NOT able to get a Chicago Dog, providing that one extra motivation to return.

And my cousin was so impressed with me, she bought me some new pants ... in SIZE 12! I love you Gap 1969!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RAINA413 3/28/2012 9:54AM

    I adore Chicago!! And all that walking fast or slow still counts towards your 10,000 steps per day which burns a surprising amount of calories and keeps your muscles working! It may not be the kick ass cardio you are used to but being active is still being active!

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DOGLADY13 3/24/2012 4:13PM

    What a fun vacation. Chicago is a cool city.

I really liked the "Ranty-pants" blog that was below the Chicago update, though.

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RAE_LEIGH22 3/22/2012 4:40PM

    Size 12s ...you're awesome!
emoticon emoticon

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MISSIFISH 3/22/2012 9:09AM

    What fun! Your family is beautiful! I'm glad you guys had such a terrific trip.

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YDAVIS23 3/22/2012 5:31AM

    Nice job! Glad you had a good trip and welcome back!

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VIXSTERLU 3/21/2012 11:59PM

    Woohoo! Cute pics of the kids. Good job staying on track while away too. Glad you had such a good time.

Jeans...hehehe, all cute. You know what I picked up end of December...Ditto's. Who remembers Ditto's?

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MISSG180 3/21/2012 9:36PM

    Size 12! Rock on, girl!!!

It looks like you had fun. Chicago is a great place to visit!

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The Power of Words

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Best words ever spoken:

(Spoken by my Chicago Cousin, taken to heart and possibly will make me cry now and a few days.)

I just want you to know I'm very proud of you. Your problem has always been food, but I've been watching you on this visit, and you are really working on the good food choices. And it shows. You have lost a tremendous amount of weight. You look better than I have seen you in years. And undertaking a triathlon?!? What you are doing is working for you. I am so proud and happy for you.

Several of you SparkFriends (I'm looking at you, YDavis and Raina in particular!) have posted about family members that get them down. While I think I am lucky to have a great family, I dont think I'm that special.

People DO notice. People DO celebrate. I'm sending this out into the universe because THIS COMMENT was a HUGE non-scale victory for me. My cousin is a total Babe so for her to say she is proud of me.... well I really am getting teary about it.

More about my Chicago trip later. It was so AWESOME!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RAINA413 3/28/2012 9:57AM


And as for family postings, keep in mind I consider you family...and you are always telling me how proud of me you are and I truly cannot begin to even tell you the worth of that. It means so much to me. Thank you!!

(And I am ridiculously proud of you too!! I am sure Robyn and Jo Anne have mentioned how I've been bragging about your accomplishments and your tri training!!!)

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XRSIZE18 3/20/2012 5:00AM

    Awwwwww Hooray for positive family members who build up your self worth with a simple comment. :) And you ARE special!

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CINERICIA 3/19/2012 5:59PM

    What a fabulous and well deserved compliment. And good for you for actually *hearing* it and taking it to heart. So many of us are quite adept at ignoring or diminishing the good things others have to say about us; we need to be open and let the positive stuff in. So I'm proud of you as well...not just for the weight loss and the healthier lifestyle but for the positive attitude and the willingness to see the positive changes in yourself. Yay!

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FARRAH511 3/19/2012 9:50AM

    You are emoticon!!!

Congratulations for being a better you!

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MISSG180 3/19/2012 8:46AM

    That's wonderful to get such positive feedback. Yay!

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YDAVIS23 3/19/2012 5:41AM

    I am SO HAPPY to read this! You deserve to hear these words!

Can't wait to hear about the trip!

Thought of you yesterday when I did week 3 of the swimming regiment. Now I just need to tack on a run or a ride :)

(don't worry about me... I have tons of love in this world!)

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VIXSTERLU 3/19/2012 1:42AM

    Way to go Optimist! Thanks for sharing :) Can't wait to hear more about your trip.

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EUPHRATES 3/19/2012 12:35AM


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MISSIFISH 3/18/2012 9:20PM

    What a great compliment!!! How nice of your cousin to support you in that way.

I can't wait to hear all about Chicago - I'm soooo jealous that you got to go!

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EICHSWIFE06 3/18/2012 9:19PM

    you are so lucky to have someone like that in your life :) its always a great feeling knowing that not only you have made a difference in your own life but its been a big enough difference that others have noticed it

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