THE_JENCH's SparkPeople Blog THE_JENCH's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community busy busy spring bees Things have been BUSY lately. I haven't tracked for about two weeks and I don't know if I have too much time to track right now. What I am going to do is see how I'm doing without tracking food and if I can't intuit then I'll have to get back to food tracking. <BR> <BR> I moved. I moved in with my boyfriend. I had many reservations but it's been good. Even my cat, who had previously run away from him, is seeming to like this arrangement. I'm now living about a 40-minute walk from work and, a... Mon, 12 May 2014 11:45:59 EST food bloating Last week I planned my food and was feeling good. Until Thursday night. I moved. Of course, I didn't move into an apartment stocked with healthy food. My boyfriend and I went to a pub where I had two beers and a chicken taco salad. The salad was not the best taco salad I've had, there was too much dressing and not enough beans. Next time I'll definitely get the dressing on the side with a side of salsa, will also likely request extra beans. Almost immediately I started feeling gassy. Friday m... Sun, 27 Apr 2014 16:05:23 EST today I'm like a chili pepper Perhaps not in shape, but I felt much better. Maybe in shape, a little... <em>211</em> <BR> <BR> I ate mindfully today, including mid-afternoon when I needed something sweet so I unwrapped a bar of dark chocolate with orange and ginger, took 2 squares, and put the rest in the kitchen for others in the office to enjoy (they did!). <BR> <BR> My body was tired from barre class yesterday and I did debate skipping zumba... but I went. I know I always feel better after working out and usuall... Tue, 22 Apr 2014 23:47:21 EST apple-bodied me Not to be confused with apple-bottomed. I had thought of myself on the hourglass side of things, not a full hourglass, I guess a bit towards the brick since I have a short waist. Nonetheless, when I measure my waist and hips there is a substantial enough difference that when I use an online body calculator (I might have to look for it again, a friend and I had a night a while ago of measuring ourselves and seeing what we were classified as) that I'm somewhere in the hourglass spectrum. BUT! T... Mon, 21 Apr 2014 22:37:15 EST Getting over a mini-egg binge. I binged on mini eggs on Monday... though I wouldn't call it a binge. I mindlessly ate a few handfuls and though I enjoyed the first few, the pleasure of the mini egg disappears after the first few. I kept going though, as drawn in my a mysterious force. However, we know it's not so mysterious! It also happened throughout the day, even though I wasn't at home much... I came home after yoga and had a handful or two. I went out for a few hours and enjoyed another handful or two when I came back... Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:46:38 EST need for a change Not just in my eating habits, though there too. I am not feeling comfortable in my own skin right now and even though I'm going to zumba three times per week and yoga at least once, I'm not eating right... maybe more on that later. <BR> <BR> The long story short is that I have been living with my mom for nearly 5 years (or really just 4.5 when I stop to count). For about 3.5 of those years I was working on my dissertation and of that time I spent nearly a year in Mexico doing my research. I'... Mon, 14 Apr 2014 01:59:55 EST weight markers ... and sort of odd markers. <BR> <BR> Two years ago when my Dad was ill, I was weighing around 146. I had at that time lost about 12 pounds in the previous few months, though I'd had two bad colds. When he passed away at the end of April 2012, I weighed around 143 and managed to maintain that weight, or a few pounds lower, for about a year. Last June when I finished my PhD I was weighing around 145 again. Since then I have been on a slow and steady incline. The most recent marker is my Gra... Mon, 7 Apr 2014 15:00:27 EST this weekend This weekend started out wonderfully (and overall it was a good weekend, but keep reading). I got to the gym for zumba (my boyfriend also came but I had him drop me off at the door because the parking lot was busy and I only had 10 minutes until class started), enjoyed that. After working out we were leaving, I checked my phone and the first thing I saw was a text of a friend of mine and her newborn baby. I squealed in delight. Then I noticed I had two missed calls, the first from my Aunt and... Sun, 6 Apr 2014 23:48:05 EST today's thoughts, March 31 Lots has been going on in the past two or so weeks, and most of it has been good. <BR> <BR> I went to New Mexico for a conference two weeks ago, that was great. I went to some great sessions but, unfortunately, my paper seemed to be placed in the wrong session. Not only were none of the people who were at most of the other sessions I attended there, but I received no feedback at all from the people who were in my session. All in all, it was a good experience... and I went up to Santa Fe for ... Mon, 31 Mar 2014 16:52:31 EST ups and the downs of this week Alright tomorrow is Friday! It's been a week of ups and downs. <BR> <BR> First, the ups. I made it to zumba on Tuesday and Wednesday. <BR> Monday I had a job meeting (not as formal as an interview and not for a job that currently exists) that has left me with a stronger job possibility. <BR> Tonight I met a wonderful friend after work for some wine. It was lovely. <BR> <BR> The downs. My period hit hard this week, both pms and the full event. Monday I felt pms creeping in so even in my job... Fri, 14 Mar 2014 00:22:29 EST good weekend First thing I did this weekend was get some fitness time in! Zumba (and about 15 minutes on a stationary bike with the attached screen that 'shows' you where you are riding and adjusts tension accordingly) first thing on Saturday morning. But it killed my body. After class I sat in the locker room for a few minutes, chatting, though I could have been doing something like putting on my jacket and getting ready to leave... and later on it felt like my arms were going to fall off. I guess that i... Mon, 10 Mar 2014 00:52:59 EST craving some sweat! This week has ended up being a sick week for me and so I've not gone to the gym. I did take a walk outside yesterday and today and that's at least something! I will go to zumba on Saturday morning though, that is a given! I'll get back to a more normal schedule next week. At least this sickness, it seemed to be a really minor flu, didn't last very long. <BR> <BR> I was debating going to the gym in the morning tomorrow but I don't think I have time... or if I do have time to go I'd have to ca... Fri, 7 Mar 2014 00:25:20 EST fitbit dreaming - opinions? I kind of want a fitbit. Will that help to motivate me? Probably not. Would it help me stay on track? Possibly. What colour wristband would I chose? Bright pink. <BR> I will think about this a little longer... and seeing as I have a trip coming up and need to get my hair done, it will likely not be an immediate purchase. <BR> <BR> Today I stayed home sick. I woke up and my lungs were heavier and drier, I was slightly stuffed up but not too badly... but I think my body was happy to have the d... Tue, 4 Mar 2014 23:56:41 EST thinking too much about how to be healthy I'm continuing along on my unmotivated-but-trying-to-get-it-together-<BR>anyways spiral. At least I'm trying. Sometimes I think I am thinking too much about it. <BR> <BR> First, I just saw this TED talk this morning. <BR> <link><BR>dieting_doesn_t_usually_work.html?utm_<BR><BR>=on.ted.com_f04gA&utm_campaign=&utm_so<BR> </link> <BR> It is by a neuroscientist talking ab... Mon, 3 Mar 2014 23:51:26 EST where is my motivation? I have not been disciplined, mindful, or 'good' in my eating habits lately. I'm not sure what my problem is... but I need to figure that out! I cheated on my cleanse, and since then I haven't felt like eating meat but I have not been balancing my intake, most of my calories are fat and carbs... and I've been going over my ideal ranges. I know what I could be doing to remedy this, but I just don't feel I have the energy to put in the effort. Even now, I find myself making excuses as to why I c... Wed, 19 Feb 2014 23:53:39 EST my chocolate 'safe' spot Yesterday evening I went to a chocolate store to get a few truffles for my boyfriend. They have bagged truffles OR the bulk, help-yourself baskets. I just wanted a few, the bags weren't what I wanted so I scooped my few and went to pay for it BUT my 350grams (more or less) would have been $18. They had a sale on the bulk chocolate so that 1.2kg was only $30. Doesn't it just make more sense to spend that extra $10 for 3x the amount of chocolate? Yes. What, you may ask, have I done with the ext... Fri, 14 Feb 2014 21:22:04 EST a cookie tale A week ago I made cookies. Because I was going on a detox, I packaged two to save until I was done and gave the rest away. Today, after lunch, I ate the cookies. In some ways, it's amazing that I had the cookies sitting on my counter for a week! I'm not too worried that I ate them, however, on this detox I have some supplements that somehow react with sugar in my stomach and I know I will end up feeling bloated and crampy in a little while... or maybe all the veggies and rice I had for lunch ... Mon, 10 Feb 2014 15:48:03 EST goal set... now go! I did make a goal. I will trim up/down to 135 by (around) Thursday April 10. <BR> <BR> That is 11 pounds in 9 weeks. <BR> It will take some effort but I can do it! <BR> <BR> How: <BR> In terms of my eating, I need to focus on the veggies and limit (not at all eliminate) carbs. The past few months, my go-to has been pasta, I am going to replace that with veggies (I have a favourite, soy-ginger veggies that I make), rice (or quinoa), and chicken breast. Easy! Of course I'll have other good m... Fri, 7 Feb 2014 12:52:30 EST REAL (&realistic) goals In the past few days I realized that I've never really made a concrete goal. My goals have been more flimsy, like, I'd like to lose 10 pounds before the summer. By not setting a date and at least defining an acceptable range of progress, I've let myself keep putting it off. When I'm not meeting my target line (and it's been diverging for weeks), I'll just reset my goals and essentially start over again. And then I repeat. Why? I guess by never really committing I can never fail... and instea... Thu, 6 Feb 2014 22:18:16 EST February detox It's that time again! My body has been feeling sluggish and I've been putting it off for a few months. The past few months, too, I haven't been as healthy as I would have liked to be... so this detox/ cleanse will get me back on the right path. It's not a crazy, juice and cabbage tea only type cleanse, it's just a few supplements to help my gut clean out and an eating plan that eliminates sugars and other foods I don't need. I have a sugar addiction SO this type of cleanse helps me break that... Mon, 3 Feb 2014 22:04:08 EST getting back on track Looking at my last blog in November, I'm tempted to list my reasons for not succeeding as I had hoped BUT instead I'll just get into this moment and focus on what I'm doing NOW. <BR> <BR> This past week I've gotten back to tracking my food. I'm doing alright and I'll keep trying to do alright or better! I am starting a detox cleanse either Sunday or Monday (pretty much cuts down on sugars in all forms, not too hard) and I'm hoping that helps my body just FEEL better. For the past few months.... Fri, 31 Jan 2014 13:49:47 EST mid-November, time to re-balance Dear Sparkfriends, <BR> <BR> It's been a while. Or, not that long really, two months. <BR> <BR> I've been teaching a class at the university, just one class on Monday Wednesday and Friday afternoons, while still working as a glorified administrative assistant on Tuesdays and Thursdays (with house and pet sitting jobs on the side as they come up). I feel robbed of time! I barely get to yoga, MAYBE once a week or up to three times per month. I've been a little better with zumba, going up to ... Sun, 17 Nov 2013 14:53:03 EST crazy busy fall days September has start with a bang! No, a bang ends. I haven't been able to stop for the past 10 days. I haven't been able to track my food (but stepped on the scale on Saturday to see that it was down 2 pounds), I haven't exercised... I'm just on the go go GO! When all I want to do is rest and relax and maybe read a book that I'd like to read. I'm not balanced... but hoping that in this next week I'll be able to catch up and the rest of the semester will be more sustainable - I definitely canno... Mon, 16 Sep 2013 00:06:03 EST twists of life this September 2013 Why does it seem that September is so good at ushering in the feeling of something *new* all through our lives? This is the first September in almost all my life that I am not a student. This September I will be entering the University as a sessional instructor. I have my PhD so I will be Dr. Jench but it hasn't quite sunk in yet... I've been a TA (teaching assistant with my own discussion sections) numerous times and I've taught two university level courses in the summer session... This time... Sun, 1 Sep 2013 17:44:36 EST honesty starting today On Friday I wrote about my wake up call from a prolonged denial. Today I had my first official weigh-in in four months and WOW was it rather shocking to see in the graph tracking my weight the line increase 10 pounds over that time! <BR> <BR> I have my plan to spark, be mindful, stay active, and sleep well. It will work out and I will work through these 10 pounds (plus the other 5 I was originally aiming for) and in doing so, more than cementing healthy habits (and I feel mine are alright.... Mon, 12 Aug 2013 15:47:59 EST ding ding ding! No, I'm not exactly a winner right now... that is the sound of realization. <BR> Please excuse this blog if I'm a bit whiney, I'm also going to be honest, take responsibility for my actions, and make a plan. <BR> <BR> I'd been feeling it... that slight discomfort when gaining weight... but I was definitely in denial. No, even though I wasn't consistently tracking I was fine, no I don't need to track the beers from last night, oh and I'll just give myself a week to normalize back to a weight ... Fri, 9 Aug 2013 19:51:06 EST Sharing thoughts on "Is Being Really Lean Really Worth It?" plus other related tangents Yesterday I read "Is Being Really Lean Really Worth It?" ( <link><BR>st=is_being_really_lean_really_worth_it </link> ) and have been reflecting on it all day today, some points specifically.... and starting from her final point. <BR> <BR> My diet and exercise habits are pretty good. Definitely not perfect but there are few days that I look back on, thinking that I shouldn't have eaten this and this and that and this and that... I am pretty mindful about... Wed, 7 Aug 2013 22:32:56 EST sugar, jumping zumba, restorative yoga, sage advice, and dinner date tonight Oh my sugar addiction! Thursday I did give in... but I know it was more an emotional reaction (and kind of amusing but not at the same time). I woke up at 5am to a CRASH as my cat pulled all the items on my dresser to the floor with her (to be fair, I had a piece of fabric running the base of my dresser and her claws to get caught in everything... she was on my dresser drinking from my water glass and I guess got caught as she went to jump down). Broken glass, ceramics, water, other stuff... ... Sat, 27 Jul 2013 16:31:52 EST the sugar monsters and their small victory today... I gave in and bought a date square. I guess I think that even though this treat has lots of sugar and butter/fat in it, the dates provide (more sugar and) just a little bit of fiber... <BR> <BR> I had my oatmeal (with unsweetened almond milk and apple) for breakfast and a nonfat latte. <BR> Lunch was a bowl of carrot ginger soup and a cup of my Mediterranean quinoa salad. <BR> Not long after that I ate my nonfat greek yogurt. <BR> And then. <BR> And then I went running errands and returned ... Thu, 25 Jul 2013 00:31:34 EST sugar demons Today was one of those days where my sugar demons were taunting me. I did bring more than enough food to work so successfully resisted the urge to go out and buy a lunch... however, in the afternoon when I started to feel sleepy I did go to starbucks, with a treat receipt from someone in the office who wasn't going to use it, where I bought a grande iced nonfat no-whip mocha. I should have just gone for an iced latte, there was way too much chocolate syrup. While at starbucks I did think, do ... Tue, 23 Jul 2013 22:16:50 EST on a bike... and not falling off Dear Sparkfriends, <BR> <BR> I have a bike! My first bike in... seriously 20 years. I kind of learned to ride as a child but did not continue and, honestly, I had no interest in riding a bike until recently when circumstance held me captive in a chair on a computer for months on end and the sun started to cthe baome out... I decided I needed to learn to ride a bike again. Or, in my case, learn how to ride a bike PERIOD. My boyfriend and I had spent some time bike shopping from the high-end s... Tue, 16 Jul 2013 00:08:17 EST sparking two days! Dear Sparkfriends, <BR> <BR> I had been feeling rather un-sparky and kept telling myself I'd get back to it... to just do it. But we all know what can happen... This weekend was going to be a good time to really start... well, no. Why not? Just because. I did make it to zumba on Saturday morning and spent much of Sunday bike shopping! <BR> <BR> Ok then, Monday! Um, no. Again, just didn't happen. I did, however, get to yoga on Monday morning. <BR> <BR> Tuesday! <BR> Why yes, I think I di... Wed, 10 Jul 2013 20:42:42 EST and now what! Dear Sparkfriends, <BR> I was away for about a month... I went down to California to finish my PhD (defend and submit)... so maybe I should change my sparkpeople name from THE_JENCH to DR_JENCH? Hahaha! <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Me, feeling just a little bit accomplished. Many times I honestly never thought I'd finish... but I did. <BR> After California, I went up to Vancouver and then out to Galiano Island for my sister's wedding. It was tr... Wed, 26 Jun 2013 00:19:50 EST stress cycle I woke up in a bit of a body funk today... just not feeling good about ME... either disliking self or in envy of others - BOTH being pointless emotions because nothing positive comes from either. SO let's just get up and get our butts to yoga. I did that. Still feeling not so great about myself though I had no reason not to! I was going to meet friend for coffee but she's having a super busy day. No worries, went to buy a vitamin B complex that I ran out of a week or more ago (I swear by vita... Mon, 27 May 2013 16:12:51 EST a bit rambling... with positive intentions! I haven't been as good to myself as I should be right now. I keep making excuses about my stress... but I'm getting more stressed when I feel like I'm sitting and uncomfortable... so I have to convince myself (and really, this shouldn't be hard) that it is in my best interest to not indulge in everything I want... and it shouldn't be hard. I have so many fruits in the fridge and those are both sweet and crunchy and filling... I just need to do it. <BR> <BR> For dinner tonight, my boyfriend a... Mon, 27 May 2013 00:30:16 EST but it sounded like a fine idea... Shapewear. <BR> <BR> Shapewear. #@!*%wear. <BR> <BR> <em>211</em> <BR> <BR> My sister is getting married in about a month. She and I went shopping almost a month ago and bought my dress. Because the front is lace, I will need a nude tank or something underneath. Sisterdearest suggested why not try some shapewear! Yes, why not!! This morning, after a wonderful yoga class, I wandered into a department store and grabbed a bunch of pieces of shapewear and headed to the change room, expecti... Fri, 24 May 2013 17:19:41 EST irregular frustrations and bike desires 8 pounds of frustration... <BR> <BR> I haven't weighed in for just over two weeks even though I wanted to. I had been doing fine, not necessarily losing much but not gaining (appreciably). When my sister was visiting my mom had a lasagne dinner and I enjoyed that... the following day (Monday) I went to weigh in to find my weight had risen from 141-ish to 144. Ok, alright, I'll just give myself a week to let the impact of the cheese and pasta subside. This past weekend my boyfriend wanted to ... Wed, 8 May 2013 11:49:47 EST from the mouths of mothers Today marks one year from when my Dad passed away. My sister visited this past weekend and we had a family dinner last night. My sister is getting married in June and for her stagette in about three weeks, us girls are going to a mountain town for a spa day and a night out. The chosen theme was 90s prom, so straight to the original 90210. I haven't gotten my outfit together yet but sis had the brilliant idea of going through some of mom's old closets. She had a dress in mind, that she found, ... Mon, 29 Apr 2013 17:35:02 EST I have been detoxified!! And let me share with you what I learned this time around. Today is the last day of my cleanse. Yesterday was supposed to be but on two days in the past two weeks I didn't end up having dinner (over-snacked in the afternoon because I was ravenous with the result I didn't want dinner) so didn't take the few supplements I take with this cleanse. I've mentioned before, this cleanse is based on eating REAL FOOD with a few items that I can't eat (dairy, anything with any flour, processed foods, sugar, tropical fruits, fermented foods, alcohol, peanuts, mu... Mon, 22 Apr 2013 01:37:23 EST addictions a-z A for almond butter and Z for zumba. <BR> <BR> Almond butter, almond butter... <BR> So this cleanse I've been on does end up restricting fats in that all meats are on the list that is supposed to comprise 20% or less of my days food (fish, on the other hand, are allowed as much as I want). No dairy. So the available sources of fats are pretty much nuts (peanuts are banned), oils, and avocado. Every morning I've had a spoon of almond butter in my oatmeal (that I also make with almond milk) an... Thu, 18 Apr 2013 20:03:10 EST capricious mirrors Of course my title is a tad facetious, it's not the mirror (or any reflective surface)! It's us and how we judge or accept what we see reflected back to us in that mirror. One day in one mirror we're hot and feeling we look great... but the next mirror only seems to showcase that which we didn't want to see. <BR> <BR> On that note... I have a (very short) tale of two mirrors in two days at two zumba classes. <BR> <BR> I joined a friend at a new gym that she's going to for their Friday even... Mon, 15 Apr 2013 00:53:32 EST Thursday's notes. Yesterday my neck was worse... but in the evening I turned it too fast to the side, heard a CCCCCCRRRRRRUUUUUUUUUNNNNNNCCCCCCCCHHHHHHH<BR>HH... and now it feels a bit better and I can move it more. So... does that mean yoga tomorrow morning and zumba Saturday morning??? I missed zumba last night due to my lack of pain-free mobility. I won't push it... but I hope to go! <BR> <BR> My cleanse is cleaning me out, starting from the inside... and I may have snacked on too many almonds yesterday. ... Thu, 11 Apr 2013 13:35:44 EST neck problems. I woke up with my cat on my chest, staring at me. Even just tilting my head a little bit to look at the furry critter I could feel it... I closed my eyes and let my head sink into my pillow. The cat gently batted my face with her pat, she wanted attention. It's happened again, my neck aches and doesn't want to move (or I can move it somewhat up and down but not side to side). I know the main culprit is me, sitting at this computer for hours on end... and my set up could be much better for my ... Tue, 9 Apr 2013 12:22:07 EST cleanse starts tomorrow... I was going to start my cleanse today BUT my boyfriend bought some amazingly wonderful empanadas yesterday (Chilean - empanadas de pino) and he left me with some SO even though I thought about freezing them I thought better of it and since I need to go grocery shopping later I may as well enjoy them today and start the cleanse tomorrow. I already had one for lunch... and then 10 minutes later I felt I was still hungry so I put the second in the oven... but am not hungry anymore so will just k... Mon, 8 Apr 2013 15:36:32 EST good news, bad news, and some more good news... How to start this blog. <BR> <BR> Good news first. My boyfriend is seriously becoming interested in his health (I have to hope I'm rubbing off on him). When I first met him almost two years ago I definitely noticed him... and also his belly. It's not a big bad belly, it's just there. As I got to know him, I didn't care. Also since the beginning of knowing him, he'd joke about being fat and I (like the good little sparker that I am) would say something like, well stop drinking so much juice a... Sun, 7 Apr 2013 18:06:34 EST feeling positive! Things are going well right now (though I should be working on my dissertation... and I will in a few moments!). I came up to stay with my boyfriend last Thursday evening. I wrote last blog that things had been a bit rocky lately, and they had, but we've been talking about it and things are feeling much better, we're both trying. What else can you ask for? Laughter and affection! <BR> <BR> We've gotten out for a few fun outings, to a conservatory here (I love plants) and to a nearby Ukrainia... Wed, 3 Apr 2013 12:28:00 EST Wednesday night! Ready for a long weekend! My long weekend doesn't start until about 3 or 4 tomorrow... but I'm still excited. <BR> <BR> It's Wednesday, went to an awesome zumba class this evening! I was debating doing some more cardio at the gym after but ended up chatting with the zumba instructor for a while. I've been going to her classes for over a year, and just last week we friended each other on facebook, HA! But anyhow, I had mentioned to her that I was thinking about zumba training this summer and she fully encouraged it...... Thu, 28 Mar 2013 00:49:45 EST good weekend I had a great weekend. Last week I had been slightly overeating... or maybe I wasn't? Because I kept moving what I had overeaten one day to the next days calories so that, ideally, I would not eat those... but it began a cycle of doing the same... Until Saturday. My days calories had been filled up with previously eaten foods plus the little bit I thought I'd eat... but when I got back from zumba I wanted something different. Same with my dinner. I tracked neither... but I would have been wit... Mon, 25 Mar 2013 00:40:38 EST a day off Yesterday was a day off... more a day off work but it also ended up being a day off eating well! <BR> <BR> On Saturday, received a text from a friend about going over to her place (with another girlfriend) around 2 since all of our significant others would be practicing (they have a band, performance next week). My first thought was, NO I HAVE TO WORK!!! But then, I thought, why not? We all need breaks sometimes... <BR> <BR> So, woke up with boyfriend. He promised me breakfast last week (... Mon, 18 Mar 2013 13:09:02 EST procrastination (and telling you all about it) I seem to be procrastinating... something about a deadline passing, mostly successfully. I can't lose sight of the next deadline just about 10 days away... So no more procrastinating! <BR> <BR> I went to yoga this morning! We had a sub and she was different than the regular guy... still a good class but not quite as intense as I like (I will still feel it tomorrow though!). After yoga... I went downtown. I have to go downtown anyway, the yoga studio I go to is inner city, just a few blocks o... Fri, 15 Mar 2013 17:13:10 EST