50,000-59,999 SparkPoints
RAINBOWCHARMER's Recent Blog Entries

Lost and Delirious?

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

I'm struggling right now. I changed my goals for my next goal weight date from August 31 to August 13 for a couple of reasons. First, I felt like 1700+ calories was giving me too much leeway and I was starting to overeat (like actually going over the max a few times in a row, etc), which really bothered me. And second, August 31 was such an arbitrary date. I didn't have a "reason" behind the date. But August 13th is the weekend that we're doing our Anniversary Celebration via the overnight stay at the GA Aquarium. So this is a "special" date, which I tend to do better with when it comes to goal setting. This knocked my max calories down to 1640 - still reasonable (and still more than I was eating previously), and it fits my comfort zone a little better. I was just not ready to up my calories quite that much... Not and stay in control. And that scares me. Because when I do reach my goal weight and go into "maintenance" mode, my calorie requirements will go up and I'm terrified that I won't be able to stay in control...
My next struggle is... once I do hit my goal weight, I don't know what to do. I've never hit a goal weight before so this has never been a concern. But now I'm close and I don't know how to handle it. What happens when I get there? How do I stay motivated to STAY there? I won't have a "goal" in sight anymore so how do I make it work?? I need goals. I'm one of those people that just cannot do well if I'm "drifting". I need specific goals and I need to know how to work towards them.

My partner suggested a 5K. I've tried and failed that at least a few times before, but I was also 30+ pounds overweight when I tried before. So... I suppose I could try again. But we'll have to come up with an alternate schedule for the dogs because my arthritic shepherd just cannot do that. She's been steadily slowing down on our walks for the last 6 months or so, and there's no way she'd ever be able to keep up (even with my slow pace) for any type of jogging. So somehow I need to fit both a slower walk for her and a training walk/run for me into my mornings? I'm just not sure how to do that.

I'll probably do the C25K type program again, but that's like 30-45 minutes per segment if I remember correctly, and 45 minutes is about what I work out total in the mornings. So (off the top of my head here) I think my partner (who walks much slower than me) is going to try to take Gabby (the senior dog) on some 15-20 min walks at least a few days a week. I'm thinking... I don't want to give up the circuit training. The strength training is good for me, but maybe I'll cut that back to twice weekly. I'll do a 20-30 min circuit training workout on Tues and Thurs (alternating front/back of the body), and then follow that with a walk (maybe a slower one with the arthritic dog?), then M/W/F, I'll do the C25K with my lab, who has more energy than 8 fully charged energizer batteries. Problem is, I still want to squeeze yoga and the kickboxing workouts in too... GAH. Where to do all this?? Maybe I want to do too much??? I definitely don't want to be working out for more than an hour a day. I feel like that would become overkill. But how do I fit in all the things I want/need?? Maybe I should do the C25K twice weekly instead of 3 times a week?? I wonder if that is reasonable?? Could I actually train for a 5K if I only ran twice weekly? Or maybe I need to add Saturday to my workouts and do the C25K on Tues/Thurs/Sat, so I can do the strength training M/W and then my alternate workout (kickboxing or yoga) on Friday? I guess that might work... Means Tray would only need to walk Gabby on Tues/Thurs, which might be more reasonable for her since she's got very limited motivation these days... Hmmm... Just not sure how best to squeeze it in. What I do know is that I definitely need a plan. Because otherwise I'm afraid I will give up and gain the weight back, and that is NOT in my plans.

Ugh. What a pain. LOL

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LEGALLYBLONDE81 7/6/2011 9:43PM

    Ok, for starters, yes you can train to 5 k running twice a week. You may have to slow down the program. It took me longer than required when I first started up (and re-started). Take your time, take your time, take your time. Stretch out the program, give your self longer walk breaks... whatever. Also, try and remember to jog slowly. There's no such thing as too slow. Speed will come with time. Get yourself running 20 mins straight, and then 5k... and then worry about getting faster.

Now, onto the other issue. The control issue. I'm going to give you the stern talking to that I asked for in my blog. You have to live your life. You have years and years and years to live and stay in shape and maintain your weight. You are not always going to be the same weight every day of your life. You are going to gain back a few pounds and you are going to make some changes and lose them again. Life is going to happen. I'm not saying throw caution to the wind and hit the chips and soda. You still have to maintain habits, but you have to let the changes be habits and not obsession. You can't spend your whole life obsessing or what's the point??? You are shooting for a few extra pounds, so that when you do gain 5 pounds, you're still at a weight you can live with. And you'll make some changes and lose them again.

I think you need to trust the calorie recommendations. If you gain a pound or two, you can always cut back/re-evaluate. You're going to have to learn to LISTEN to your body.

I have been where you are, especially at times when I've lost a LOT of weight. I've been cruising for so long I'm afraid to give up control. So loosen the controlling death grip incrementally, just as you gained it. Relax the "rules" a little bit, a week at a time. You can decrease your exercise all together. 3 cardio sessions a week and 1-2 weight training sessions is plenty. Running can be two of those sessions.

If and when you decide you want to stop counting calories, I have some great advice I got from a nutritionist that I'd be happy to share. A sort of short cut way of monitoring your calories.

I would also highly recommend you take a look at this very clever woman's system for monitoring her maintenance:


Great stuff.

Just tell yourself "That'll do!"

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEGENNAN 7/6/2011 1:47PM

    Oh man. So much in this post that I can relate to! I have reached my goal weight and tried maintenance, only to go back to a more restrictive range. I still generally eat more than the suggested amount, but I think I'm holding steady thanks to a lot of exercise right now. But I definitely feel you on the loss of control anytime you try to ease up on those limits. I think you are making the right choice to anchor your goals to a specific and meaningful date: Aug 13th emoticon emoticon

I can also relate to trying to find enough time to fit in all the workouts. I try to remind myself that I used to think nothing of watching 2-3 hours of TV at night, so why shouldn't I be able to work out for 2-3 hours on certain days? One thing that helps me is to break it up on those days, like a run in the morning and then training on the water at night. You could do strength training or yoga in the morning, and try the C2k portion at night three times a week - or vice-versa? If you count Saturday and Sunday, that gives you 7 possible workout days. So even if you take 1-2 days off, that still leaves plenty of 20-60 minute chunks of time before and after work plus Saturdays and Sundays to fit it all in emoticon emoticon emoticon

It would be excellent if your partner could walk the slower dog more so you could try running with the lab 3 times a week and finish that 5k. I've been keeping up with your posts on the Walking Across the USA board and from your current levels of exercise, you shouldn't have ANY problems completing a 5k. I think you just need to pick one that sounds like fun - it helps if you have any friends doing one - and then commit to it. You will be so proud of yourself afterward! emoticon emoticon


Report Inappropriate Comment

mmmmmmmmmm Fresh Peaches!

Friday, July 01, 2011

So I checked out the farmers market last night that the local library parking lot hosts once a week during the summer. Brought $20 and a couple grocery bags with me and picked up some fruits, eggs, and veggies at less than grocery store prices!

I still had $7.50 left too. :)

I got some locally grown peaches, tomatoes, zucchini, squash, and free-range eggs, which I'm very excited about! My tomato plants should be starting to give me some veggies soon, and hopefully the peppers too, but in the meantime I'll frequent the farmers market on Thursday evenings. :) I had one of the peaches for dessert after lunch today and it was super delicious!

I am planning to make some quiche this weekend with the eggs and some of the veggies, and then see how that does for snacks in the afternoons. I think it should freeze OK too, which will make it nice since I need "on the go" type things.

I am trying to alternate veggies and fruits for my snacks, and add them to my meals as well. I want to try dry beans for chili the next time I make it, rather than canned beans. Although I'm not sure if that works for chili beans?? It would for kidney beans for sure, and I think I'll see about adding a few other beans and perhaps quinoa (thanks LegallyBlonde81 for the suggestion!) too. So we'll see how that goes. :) I still have some frozen chili left from my last batch though so I'll eat that first.

I think our next investment at home is going to be a small deep freezer. That will serve us very well with the changes we are working to accomplish. There's a bigger farmers market up north of us too that I think we're going to check out - it's on Saturdays, and I want to see about picking up a flat or two of my favorite berries to rinse and freeze for future use. Probably much cheaper than buying frozen fruit at the grocery store. And if I can freeze enough of it to last me through the winter throughout the summer, that will save us $$ down the line too. :)

Ok, so now I'm feeling very rambly... ah well. It helps me to think through things sometimes.

Hope everyone is having a lovely, healthy day!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LEGALLYBLONDE81 7/3/2011 4:25PM

    Farmer's markets here are always WAY more expensive than the grocery store which I find very off-putting. Buying from from small local places is a status symbol among the people I know (aka http://stuffwhitepeoplelike.com/201
ruit/ or http://stuffwhitepeoplelike.com/200
8/01/18/5-farmers-markets/ or http://stuffwhitepeoplelike.com/200
8/01/19/6-organic-food/). The locals are well aware of this and jack their prices up. I would actually guess that organic or not, most local farmers charge close to double at local farmer's markets. And since we can buy "Ontario produce" in stores, you're actually paying more for the exact same stuff. I'm going to stop ranting here and save this for a blog post of my own... or not since Christian Lander has covered this phenomenon in at least 3 blog posts. Just saying, people here buy into the appearance piece LIKE CRAZY and will then spend hours recounting their 50 mile drive to a "local farmer/farmer's market".

As for dry beans in chili. I have only ever done dry kidney beans. You have to soak them overnight, but they taste fine. Let me know how the dry beans work and please let me know how the quinoa is!!

Report Inappropriate Comment

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

The organic white peaches this year are especially FANTASTIC!!!

As to the beans...Soak the beans overnight first in water to cover. If your recipe has a lot of liquid and cooks a couple of hours or more, they can go in after the soak. If not, after the soak, simmer the beans until they're tender (it all depends on the bean--sometimes an hour, sometimes two) then proceed with the recipe.


Report Inappropriate Comment

Thanks for the tips! And Greek Yogurt...

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Ok, so thanks to those who chimed in on tips for adding calories to my day without sabotaging myself. My fats/proteins are typically what is low for me throughout the day, while carbs is usually right at the top of (or over) what SP recommends.

My next issue is I'm ridiculously picky. I hate nuts (exception being peanut butter - which I just discovered the Jif Natural peanut butter which is DELICIOUS), and cottage cheese. Yuck. :(

I always save room for a yummy snack for dessert after dinner (i.e. something delicious like one serving of the Keebler Grasshopper cookies or a homemade hot cocoa, etc), so I typically don't crave the junk food during the day. In fact, I'm not normally all that hungry during the day which makes it even harder for me to get my calories in before dinner. Once I get home I am typically famished, so I'm likely to overeat at dinner. This is something I want to really work on changing.

I love almost all fruits and I like a lot of veggies, so figuring out ways to include those would be awesome. I'm kind of leaning towards making and dividing a big quiche or making mini quiches and bringing those with me to work to add more veggies and protein/good fats to my day. I'm thinking that might be an ideal solution at this point. I could get all sorts of good stuff in there - tomatoes, peppers, onions, chives, celery, etc. and have a tasty dish without much guilt.

One of my big goals right now is to limit the processed foods that I eat. I want to try to significantly cut down on any processed foods, and make sure that the ones I eat are not crammed with junk (no HFCS, no hydrogenated anything, etc). So that's my next challenge. emoticon I really want to "clean up" my diet as much as possible. Now I'm not going to go nuts and cut out all processed food, or even all "junk" because I'm still fully intending on having my freebie days and my yummy snacks on occasion. But I want the bulk of my diet (i.e. my main meals and snacks) to be as un-processed and as close to "whole" as possible. What I'm finding is that I actually LIKE that food! Surprising to me, but I enjoy it! Now I will still eat whole wheat pastas and whole wheat breads, and the Jif Natural peanut butter, and things along those lines, but I want to increase the amount of unprocessed foods that I eat in relation to the volume that I've been consuming.

This fall, I am planning to start trying to bake my own breads and see how that goes. I'm not about to turn on the oven while it's 90+ degrees outside so that will wait a few months, but I want to experiment with some of the cooking and baking that I haven't tried in the past.

These are just goals that I have. And hope to implement. With your support of course. :)

And on a separate note - I bought greek yogurt in an effort to cut back on the hormone/antibiotic laden "regular" yogurts (non-organic) that I normally use in my morning smoothies. I'm still eating the 'regular' yogurts as my lunch snack, but may change that going forward too. I'm trying to switch more to organics where I can, and my main focuses are going to be eggs/dairy, and EWG's "dirty dozen" pesticide laden fruits/veggies (apples, berries, etc). If I ate meat, I'd be focused on going organic there too, but as that isn't an issue for me I don't particularly care to worry about that too much. :)

Anyhow - the greek yogurt has this "tang" of sorts that I'm really struggling with. I added granulated sugar to my smoothie yesterday and today (1/2 tsp yesterday, 1 tsp today) and really am still not finding it very yummy. In fact, it's more of a chore to drink it with the greek yogurt. I'm not sure if it's just the brand I bought (Chobani) or if all greek yogurt has that kick?? If so, I may try the organic regular yogurt and see if that is any better. Theoretically the greek yogurt is healthier even than the organic regular yogurt, but if I can't get past the taste, that may just be another of my picky things that I don't eat... So if anyone has thoughts there on how to make it yummier, I'd be really appreciative!

Now that I've written a book... I should hurry up and finish my lunch (homemade chili! yum!) and get back to work.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LEGALLYBLONDE81 7/1/2011 7:58AM

    Try different brands and flavours of greek yogurt. Some is great, some not so great. The main line of supermarkets (american for grocery stores hee hee) here just came out with a line of fat free greek yogurt that I am not at all fond of. The full fat is a different story all together.

Total aside (because you can't get it in Canada and I'm 99% sure you can't get it in the US), but in Iceland they have something called Skyr. It's similar to greek yogurt but always fat free and REALLY good. It has that slightly bitter flavour, but I found that varied by brand as well.

For additional protein have you tried making quinoa? I have found a couple good recipes. It's not LOADED with protein, but you'll get 5-6 grams per serving and I find those 4-6's can really add up.

Also, if you don't like cottage cheese (consistency I assume?) try blending it with avocado and a couple of tablespoons of salsa (or guacamole mix) and you have a creamier, high protein, reduced (good) fat guacamole. It is unrecognizable as cottage cheese and very very good. Arguably an improvement on regular guacamole.

Report Inappropriate Comment
JBINAUSTIN 6/30/2011 3:44PM

    I know what you mean about Greek Yogurt having a tang. I like the Oikos brand best; it's rather mild and reminds me of sour cream. I mix it with milk in my breakfast cereal or eat it with blueberries or other fruit.

Report Inappropriate Comment

How to eat more?

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

So my calorie limits have gone up (yay!), but I don't want to go crazy with what I eat just because I can eat more. So how do I eat more and do so in a healthy manner?

That's my next real challenge. I'm finding that I don't eat enough earlier in the day so I end up with more than 50% of my calories at dinner time, which is not good for me. So... how do I eat more during the day (when I'm normally not very hungry anyhow)?

First, I know I need to start having a small snack prior to working out. Sometimes I manage it (a small banana or a half cup of grapes), but not always. I also think I need to eat more at breakfast. I tend to hover around 300 calories for breakfast, and I probably need to up that to closer to 400 calories. Maybe even a little over that. Lunch typically isn't too bad, but still close to 300 calories, when it probably should be more like 400 calories. Then I need to throw in an afternoon snack (today I have 1 cup of grapes for my afternoon snack), and then when I get to dinner, I'll have a more "normal" amount of calories left over, rather than 900+ calories to go for the day.

So I just need to come up with a workable schedule as well as a plan for different snacks and foods I can use (easy access stuff or things I can easily prepare ahead of time) so that I don't have a reason not to incorporate the calories that I need to bring into my day. I am definitely open to suggestions. I don't want to fill these "extra" calories with junk. I want to focus on fruits and veggies when I can, with perhaps some healthy carbs, fats, and proteins thrown in. Let's keep in mind I don't eat meat. emoticon

Right now my typical day's meals look like this:

Morning snack (if I remember) - small banana or 1/2 cup grapes
Breakfast (during the week) - fruit smoothie (w/ greek yogurt, frozen fruits, v8 Fusion juice, & flax seed)
Lunch - typically something homemade - chili, vegetarian soups, etc. and a nonfat yogurt
Afternoon snack (not something I've implemented yet) - today is 1 cup grapes, but I'm not sure what else to try.
Dinner - varies - veggie wraps, veggie burgers, PB&J, soup, wheat pasta w/ veggies, etc. Depends what we're in the mood for. :)

So I guess I'm looking for some suggestions to try so I can get more healthy calories in during the day so I don't have to eat so many in the evening.

Thanks all. :)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WHEATIES23 6/30/2011 1:58AM

  I also need to make a conscious effort to shift some evening calories earlier in the day. You could try pairing that piece of fruit for a snack with a protein to help balance out the quick sugars in fruit. I recommend cottage cheese: it's a great source of vegetarian protein because it can be low fat while still high in protein. I also like it with blue corn chips. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
LEGALLYBLONDE81 6/29/2011 9:25PM

    If I'm craving a candy bar or chips I just eat them (a small bag cause I won't be able to stop on a big bag). I just track. And now that you are upping your calories (I'm guessing to the 1700/1800 range) you can blow 200-400 calories on crap in any given day and still not starve.

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEGENNAN 6/29/2011 3:40PM

    I also eat a lot more calories in the second half of the day than in the first, but I don't let it worry me. I do think that I eat more often than you, though. I am the Queen of Snacks!! Like, at least one snack between breakfast (which is often eaten after a small morning snack, too, like a small banana) and lunch, and sometimes two. So I have tons of snack ideas for you :)

Things like a cup of blueberries or a cup of strawberry halves or a hardboiled egg with some salt and pepper during the morning. In the afternoon I like cut-up veggies (carrots, cukes, broccoli florets, bell pepper strips) alone or dipped in a few tablespoons of low-cal salad dressings. Or 12 grape tomatoes. Or a baggie of sliced English cucumbers. Or even a whole salad - usually just lettuce, cuke, tomatoes and just a little crumbled light cheese on top.

That is really a great idea to see where you are lacking nutrients and adding more food in those columns. Since I snack and eat so much processed foods, I always get plenty of fat and usually enough carbs. But if I'm needing more protein, which is always, then I might eat some tuna mixed with fat-free cottage cheese as a really hearty snack. Or some Better than Peanut Butter spread thinly on some Wasa crispbreads and some sliced banana on top of that.

If I am craving chips then I have a serving of reduced fat Wheat Thins - sometimes alone and sometimes with a Laughing Cow light cheese wedge. I love those crackers and those cheese wedges make EVERYTHING taste better, even crispbreads and melba toast. If I'm PMSing and craving a candy bar, I go for a Special K chocolatey pretzel bar or one of those Fiber One bars. Other good low-cal desserty snacks are those little fat-free pudding snacks that come in packs of 4.

Also there are many types of low-cal sugar-free frozen things that are awesome in the summer. I currently have Fudgesicles, Creamsicles, Philly Swirls and regular Popsicles in my freezer to keep me cool and satisfy my sweet tooth. And home-made frozen yogurt, but that is a little more fattening - I made it when I was on maintenance but now I'm back to restricting again, doh emoticon

Anyway, hope I gave you some ideas and GOOD LUCK!!! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
LEGALLYBLONDE81 6/29/2011 1:23PM

    Try adding nuts or nut butter, hummus for dipping, full fat cheese and yogurt, a little dessert (low fat ice cream). What nutrients do you tend to be toward the higher end of your rage (fat, carbs, protein?)? Maybe if there is one where you tend to be low look at adding some foods high in that nutrient. I stress-eat Craisins. You can get 100 calorie packets. They are sweet and fairly healthy. You can even add these to your salad (ditto nuts and cheese).

Report Inappropriate Comment

So here's the scoop. Graduation and all that.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Had a great weekend with family. The healthy eating mostly went out the window. LOL. But in all reality I guess I didn't do too terribly. I'm at 140 this morning, which I think is mostly bloating because I definitely had more salt/sugar than normal for me. So I expect that I'll be back to 139 by my weigh-in this Saturday.

We were active all weekend - Friday was the aquarium in Atlanta, Saturday we walked around Helen, GA all day and then played miniature golf. Sunday was my graduation, which went awesome! I didn't trip or fall down! Yay! Yesterday was my recovery/straighten up the house day. Which was fine as well. We spent some time in the pool at the hotel all but Friday (thunderstorms kept us out Friday evening. oh well), so I definitely got some exercise in, though like I mentioned my eating wasn't fantastic. Not terrible, but could have been better. I'm not bummed out about it though. I'm happy with how the weekend went, and knowing that I'm right back at it today with getting up and exercising this morning and planning out my meals tells me that I've grown exponentially in that aspect of my life. In the past, one "bad" weekend would have thrown me off for a LONG time. But not anymore!!

I decided to go ahead and set another goal for myself of 135, but am giving myself 2 months to get there. This will increase my calorie range and slow down my weight-loss, but will allow me to concentrate a little more fully on healthy living and fitness rather than on counting calories alone. I want to experiment with some recipes from the Jillian Michael's Master Your Metabolism cookbook, which I borrowed from the library. So I'll post a few reviews once we do that. I'm also well-aware that what I'm trying to lose now is vanity weight and not weight relating to unhealthy body fat. So I know my body may not cooperate as well as it has been thus far. But I am hopeful that it does. If I can drop a pound every other week, I will be really satisfied with that progress. In addition I'm going to be more focused on measurements than weight, as I do still have some inches to lose, but I know that as I lessen my calorie deficit, I will (hopefully) be building a little more muscle rather than just losing fat, so I expect my weight loss to slow but inches lost to continue a little more steadily. Or that is my hope anyhow. So we'll see how that goes.

Anyway, I am happy with the progress I have made so far this year, and I'm enjoying the fact that I'm not afraid to have my picture taken anymore! I have lots of pictures of this weekend to prove it too! Yay! May post a few on here when I get a chance. Even though they won't truly be "after" pictures yet. But they're certainly an improvement from my "before" pictures!!!

Sooo...... I guess that's about it for now.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WHEATIES23 6/30/2011 2:06AM

  emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEGENNAN 6/28/2011 4:09PM

    Congratulations on your excellent weekend and just your overall progress! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment

    Oooooooh Imma have to look that up for sure! Depends on what time though since I can't get calls at work. Bummer. :( But if it's in the evening or something that would work for me! Although I have no idea what I'd ask. LOL. Honestly my questions are not so much weight related as nutrition related - i.e. vitamins, etc. I'd have to make a list. :)

As for what is next... well another 4-5 pounds and then I'm not sure. LOL

Report Inappropriate Comment
LEGALLYBLONDE81 6/28/2011 2:13PM

    You're going to love 1700 calories a day! I promise. Glad graduation went well!

So what next? You've basically reached your weight loss goal and you've graduated...

Also, If you're available to be called tomorrow, you can call in a question for the JM podcasts. The info is on her FB page.

Report Inappropriate Comment

First Page  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 Last Page