Sunday, May 16, 2010
I'm relaxing in front of the television, catching up on national and world news and the latest political wrangling. I think back on how different things seem even from the beginning of this year. Yes, I mean pre-Supreme Court Justice nominee, pre-oil catastrophe, pre-volcanic eruption, and pre-attempted Times Square bombing. But I also mean pre-light bulb moment, pre-shedding of 20 pounds, pre-feeling healthier, happier, and more in control of my life regardless of what is happening in the world, nation, community, or in my own life. What is humbling is the only real thing that stands between me here now and me there then is that time has passed and life has continued to unfold.
When I was in my late 30s, I had to make a decision of whether to attend graduate school. I really wanted to, but was concerned that I was getting older and what it would mean to completely change jobs/career. My decision came down to time. I would eventually be 40 no matter what I did. I could be 40 with an advanced degree or I could be 40 without an advanced degree. Time would march on regardless. So I made the choice and today I am so pleased that I made the decision to go back to school because my 40th birthday came and went, but when it did I had my advanced degree.
In February, I had a choice; I made the decision to take care of my body. I continue to make that choice daily. I look into my unknowable future and see a time when I am fit, healthy, and active. Because of the choices I make daily, I am already there. The only thing that stands between me and that day is time. I am going to enjoy the journey, because I take comfort in knowing that the destination is inevitable.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
I've been reading on an SP message board about how delicious Lean Cuisine's Butternut Squash Ravioli is, so I decided I had to try it. The ravioli dinner is from the "Spa Cuisine" line and is described as "butternut squash ravioli in a creamy sauce with walnuts, snap peas and carrots." The picture of the ravioli looked less than appetizing, but the pictured vegies looked fresh and crisp.
In the grocery store next to the Lean Cuisine dinners was the Eating Right dinners, a Lucerne product that I think is a Safeway brand, but don't quote me on that. Anyway, Eating Right also has a Butternut Squash Ravioli dinner described as "tender ravioli stuffed with butternut squash topped with golden walnuts in a creamy sauce." This picture looked much more appetizing than the Lean Cuisine box, because the ravioli filling looked bright and creamy and it seemed to have more vegies per serving. I decided to conduct a head-to-head comparison.
Bottom line: Lean Cuisine raviolis were far superior in taste and texture.
The Lean Cuisine raviolis were tender and the filling was delicious and flavorful, especially when compared to the chewier, nearly tasteless Eating Right raviolis. Aside from the raviolis, both had crisp, fresh vegies and a nice, creamy sauce. Even so, I think I'll have to agree with the recommenders on this one. I purchased two more of the Lean Cuisines today. I don't plan to purchase the Eating Right raviolis again (although this brand does have some other delicious entrees).
Just the facts:
- Both dinners have 280 calories, although the Lean Cuisine is a slightly larger serving size (280g vs. 238g).
- Lean Cuisine's sodium is slightly higher (490mg vs. 330mg).
- Lean Cuisine's total fat and saturated fat content is lower (7g vs. 9g/2g vs. 3g).
- Both dinners have 10g protein.
Friday, May 14, 2010
A few days ago I read something online at Oprah.com that has been wiggling around at the back of my mind ever since. The article was by Martha Beck and the topic was Trust. Beck discussed the meaning of a quote by Lao Tzu that included a phrase about trusting people who aren’t trustworthy. When I first read this, I thought it was a crazy bit of advice, because only a fool would trust the untrustworthy. After all, it wouldn’t take too long before said fool was shown why the untrustworthy are labeled as such. But Beck went on to explain that her interpretation is that you can trust the untrustworthy to be untrustworthy. In her words, “if someone in your life . . . [is] perpetually failing to keep promises, tell the truth, quit drinking, or show compassion, this is exactly what you can depend on them to keep doing.”
My translation: the likelihood of someone acting differently is far less than the likelihood of that same individual acting as they usually do. Therefore, to keep hoping that someone will finally treat you as you dream or hope they will is highly unlikely. Accept people as they are. Trust that people will continue to be who they are and act how they have acted in the past. Trust that past actions are a very strong indicator of future actions. If past actions have not or would not provide you with what you need, then accept that and accept them as they are. Or don’t. But don’t expect them to change. How absolutely simple. So why have I been hoping that certain people would be and act other than how they have always been and have always acted? It is time for me to grow up, to accept reality, and to trust that, for better or worse, people will continue to be who they have always been.
Reference: “Who’s Never Going to Let You Down?” by Martha Beck in O, The Oprah Magazine, February 17, 2009 (http://www.oprah.com/relationships/Martha
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Today's small victory is that I did my very first unassisted roll up in pilates class today. This goal has been three months in the making. Woohoo! I have yet to conquer the dreaded teaser, but with the success of my first roll up, I consider myself pre-teaser certified!
Today, I also completed Week 4 Day 2 of the Couch to 5K program. Yay me! I am so proud of my so-not-a-runner self pressing on to become a lean, mean, jogging machine!
This week I lost 4.5 pounds. Woohoo! This after a two-week stall of gaining and then losing the same pound. I tried not to let it get to me when it happened, telling myself that I'm doing everything I should be doing and my body will let go of the [water]weight when it is ready. Well, I guess it was ready because there it went. That puts me at a total loss of 21 pounds in roughly two months. Amazing! This sounds like a big victory, and it is, but I am exactly one third of the way to my goal weight. Even so, that goal is feeling a heck of a lot closer today than it did just two months ago.
Because of the weight loss, I'm starting to look and feel differently, too. I ran into an old colleague of mine the other day. The first thing she said was that I had lost weight. I guess it's starting to show. Yay! Also, I noticed that my stomach doesn't stick out as much when I am seated and I don't feel the pressure on my breathing that I used to have. I didn't notice that the pressure went away, but last night it occurred to me that the pressure wasn't there anymore. That's huge! I've noticed that my skin is much better now. I really was suffering from acne and especially cystic acne for several years, which is very painful. I was on antibiotics for months at a time. The antibiotics really helped, but each time I went off of them the acne would return. Well, I've been off the antibiotics for about a month now and the acne hasn't really returned. Yeehaw!!!!!
I could keep going, but can you tell I'm feeling really good? That may be the biggest victory of all!
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Yesterday’s plan was to do a pilates class, then complete Week 4 Day 1 of the C25K Program. My walk to the gym usually takes between 8-10 minutes. I decided to jog to the gym, which I thought shouldn’t really be much of a problem at this point. Well, after 1.5 minutes I was feeling winded and took it down to a brisk walk. It kind of bummed me out, because how could I up the C25K training intensity from last week to this week if I had trouble breathing after only 1.5 minutes? I started to doubt my ability to move up to the Week 4 intensity and wondered if I should just repeat Week 3. I finally decided that I’d try to do the Week 4 intervals, but if I couldn’t do it, then I’d drop back down to Week 3.
After pilates, I got on the treadmill and started with the warm-up walk, still thinking about my decision to “try” to do Week 4. Then something hit me. “Try” has, hidden within it, a sinister belief that one is not confident of success. It also has an implied ability to quit, because, after all, you accomplished your goal of “trying” even if you didn’t succeed at whatever it was you were “trying” to do. Trying lets you duck out at any point when the going gets too tough for comfort. I decided that this was not acceptable. I was going to DO Week 4. And if I really couldn’t, then I wouldn’t do it, but I wanted my body to determine that and not my mind. I then thought about how this relates to life in general. Don’t “try” and just DO. Have the confidence that you can accomplish more than you even believe you can accomplish, but the only way to know is to go for it, to push through the self-erected mental barriers and achieve something that you can be proud of.
So I made a decision that I would complete Week 4 Day 1. To do this, I needed to complete the 3/5/3/5 min. jogging intervals. The first two were good, but the second three-minute interval was more challenging, because my chest had started to tighten up. But I reminded myself that I had done even more before, so I knew that I could do it. I’m not going to lie. The last 5 minute jog was not easy. My breathing was getting pretty ragged at the end. But when I knew I only had one more minute until I completed W4D1 I took a deep breath, relaxed, and jogged passed the finish line, breathing relatively easily.
This is a life lesson. I don’t want to be a “trier.” I want to have self-confidence and pride in my achievements. So for now on I want to remember to not try anymore, just DO!
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