Total score at the grocery store this afternoon. I had to run to work to drop off some papers to upgrade my certification, and while I was there, I decided to run by the Kroger to pick up some Quorn products. Unfortunately, all of the Krogers closer to home have closed down, so the closest one is about 40 minutes away, close to work. It works out fine during the schoolyear, but over the summer, it’s pretty inconvenient. Anyway, as I was walking through the bakery, I found this:

Picture 150

The picture doesn’t do it justice, and I didn’t think to take a picture earlier. The bread is incredible. I don’t remember off the top of my head everything that’s in it, but my personal favorites were the flax seeds and the sunflower seeds. I used this bread to make an egg and tomato sandwich for dinner tonight. It was AMAZING!!! I got the idea from Leah’s post here. I just couldn’t bring myself to do strawberries with eggs, but I think that I’m going to have some strawberries tonight. I’ve got a container of them in the fridge that I need to use up, and I am definitely going to need an evening snack tonight.

I think I might have overdone it a bit today, but I feel good. I’ll be hungry in a little while, but I feel good right now. I decided I was going to up my workouts just a bit. Nate got all of the stuff for the EA Active for the wii. I was a skeptic, but he and I tried it together a few weeks ago, and I felt like I got much more of a workout than I expected. I decided tonight to find out exactly how much. There is a 30 day challenge on there, so I decided to start the “challenge” and see how much progress I get over the next month. Of course, I won’t be doing that alone- I can’t give up my running! But it would be a possible addition to the runs. So a little while after my run (200 calories- I cut it short today, knowing that I was going to do the Wii) I started the heart rate monitor up again to see exactly how many calories the wii torched. In just over 30 minutes, I burnt a whopping 336 calories, making my total burn for the day 536!! Woah! Since I’m somewhere around 1300 calories for the day, I know I’m going to need to eat something in a little while. I’m thinking an apple and some soy yogurt sounds pretty yummy. I’m in trouble… haha. Strawberries sound good… apple and soy yogurt sounds good… Pretty much everything sounds good right now, I guess.

Right now, I just feel pretty nasty. I need a shower!

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I decided yesterday afternoon that I had had a bad attitude for long enough, and it was time to do something. I wasn’t being completely honest with myself. I had lost a few pounds, it just wasn’t coming as quickly as I would have liked, but it wasn’t/isn’t going to come at all if I continue what I was doing before I cleaned up my diet. So with that in mind, I made a phone call to the lady who handles the memberships at the community pool. The price for a membership is steep, but it would get me a key, where I could go swim any hour of the day, rather than it being on a schedule like it was at the gym. There, I couldn’t swim anytime there was a class going on, and the classes went on for most of the afternoon. Basically, I could swim after 8… but I didn’t even like to go to the gym after 8, so that wasn’t working. Swimming is so much fun to me. I am still planning to continue my running, but it wouldn’t hurt me to have another exercise that I enjoy. The plan is to give it everything I’ve got for the next 2 months- to try to lose as much as I can before I go back to work. That way, hopefully, I’ll be able to go back to karate then. Really, that’s my ultimate goal… to get back to karate. But the dojang I want to train at is about 5 minutes from where I work, but about 45 minutes from my house. So over the summer, when I’m not working, I spend more time driving to and from class than I do actually in class, so I want to make it a seasonal thing. Basically, take the summers off to do other activities, and then return to class every fall.

So this year, I want to spend the summer losing weight. Ideally, I’d like to lose at least 30 lbs this summer. Yes, I know that’s more than the recommended 2 lbs a week, but it wouldn’t be done the wrong way, honestly. I want to do it by eating right and working out, and I know that if I’m putting in hours a day to working out (which is the plan) then I can safely do at least 30 lbs this summer. That would put me back where I was when I started training for my black belt test, so I know that I can do the workouts at that weight, so long as I’m in shape for them, which I would be. The goal is this:

  • 5 days a week swimming
  • 3-4 days a week running
  • 5-6 days a week of workout videos
  • 1 full rest day, 1 “easy” day- meaning only the wii or a workout video (and I can assure you it wouldn’t be a Jillian Michaels video… those are never “easy”)

All of the above is subject to some tweaking, but that’s the basic plan for now. What I’m figuring is that since I’m not working this summer, the calories I usually burn just from being at work will need to be burnt off some other way, in addition to the above, so for that, I’d like to plan a morning walk. Weather permitting, I’d love for it to be outside, but if need be, I could use the treadmill.

After this past week, I am seriously considering making an intentional mistake, and filled with a sort of “to hell with the consequences” attitude. After having been so good for a few months, and it basically getting me nowhere, I took a week off from being good. This week, I ate whatever I wanted to. If I wanted a grilled cheese, fries, and a mountain dew, I had exactly that. I didn’t take any pictures or record anything anywhere because I just wanted a week off of being so damn good for no damn reason. I have finally come to the conclusion that, regardless of what every fitness guru and doctor says, it does me not a shred of good to eat right and exercise to control my weight. I ate so healthy for 2 months and lost nothing. I ate like crap for a week, and didn’t run once, and gained less than a pound… which could easily be 1) water weight, or 2) prevented by running or cutting a bit of the crap now and then.

The worst part is that it’s depriving myself of what I want, but without any good coming from it. If I’m going to deprive myself… well… I know how to do that and get some results. Does it suck? Yes… but it works, and at that point, given two options that suck, I’m going to go with the lesser sucky… meaning the one that gets me what I want. I’m going to totally deprive myself of everything to lose some weight. I’ve got years of practice at that! So I am very seriously considering intentionally making a “mistake” by dropping to a drastic reduction… I’m thinking in the neighborhood of 500 cals a day, with running until I can shed some of this.

I know it’s not a good idea. I’ve done it before enough times to know exactly what a bad idea it is, but I have absolutely lost control over my body, and I look in the mirror and hate myself. I am tired of hearing people preach “diet” and “exercise.” Do you think that I haven’t honestly tried that?! I gave my diet a drastic overhaul, and I have been working out. That’s evidenced by the fact that my running has improved soo much lately. But still, nothing. And it’s so disheartening to see all of these other blogs where people talk about how they got healthy and lost the weight and transformed into these models of health and fitness with their drop dead gorgeous bodies, and to know that I have tried all of those exact things, and they did nothing at all for me. I stayed just as fat as ever. It’s like… what’s wrong with me? Am I just doomed to be this incredibly fat? Am I stuck this way forever?

Before I get to my main topic, I have an issue to address.

I have been so hungry for the past 2 days. It was to the point last night where I woke up in the middle of the night, tummy growling, and could not get back to sleep. After an hour or so of hoping I could wait out the hunger pangs, I gave in and got a couple of handfuls of nuts to hold me over til morning. (For the record, I had a huge dinner, so I know it wasn’t a lack of eating enough.) Finally, I got back to sleep, but then had the same hunger when I got up this morning. I had some soy yogurt, granola, a banana, and some more nuts. Still, on the way to work, growl, growl.

I could not get this hunger to go away. I drank a ton of water, thinking maybe I was mistaking thirst for hunger, but still, right up until 11:45 (my class’s lunch time) it was growling. It would stop for a while, and then start up again. 10:00, here it comes. Lunch was a veggie burger patty, leftover grilled veggies from last night, and a small piece of cake from one of my students. (It was her birthday.) The hunger finally slacked off a bit, but returned full force this afternoon after school. More yogurt and granola calmed it a bit…

Dinner was nothing blogworthy- picking at a few things from a mexican restaurant- not my first choice, but I was feeling social tonight, so I tagged along and tried to do my best with what was available. Needless to say, a couple of hours later, there was the hunger again. It just won’t go away. I just had some more nuts and am sipping some green tea, hoping that it’ll settle soon.

Usually when I’m hungry like this, nuts put a quick end to the hunger pangs. I don’t know why this time is so different.

I have also been really down today. That’s the main issue. Really, it’s not just today, but I’m at the point where I’m frustrated and upset beyond what I can handle on my own. For a couple of months now, I have been making a real, sincere effort to lose weight and be healthy. I have had slip-ups, but they have not been regular, and I have been working hard to make some major changes. The general trend has been in the right direction. I know that anything good takes hard work, and often significant amounts of time, but I’m at the point now where I feel I should at least be seeing some return on that hard work, and I’m not. I still sit at 211 lbs. The same weight I started from a year ago, and the same weight that I started again at 2 months ago. I am beginning to feel as if my body is determined to be this weight whether I give it oatmeal and zucchini or brownies and ice cream. As if it’s irrelevant whether I sit on the couch all evening or spend an hour working out every night. And if my body is determined to be the same weight and relative health, well then, what’s all this hard work for in the end? Why am I trying so hard, only to end up right back where I started?

Can I notice changes? Sure.

I can see that I now

  • am able to run 5 minutes straight without passing out or throwing up
  • have the slightest bit of muscle beginning to develop in my calves and thighs
  • no longer crave fatty, fried, sugary, salty crap (I mean…, snacks)
  • am beginning to get back some degree of balance (today, I was climbing around my tables and chairs in my classroom- it’s been a couple of years since I comfortably did that)

Still, is all of that worth it to me? I mean, I don’t just want to look fit- I want to be fit… but at the same time, a major motivator for me is my own comfort level in my own skin, and I feel like I’m getting no closer to that. And I’m at a loss for what to do to make it happen. I mean, I need help. I am doing to the best of my knowledge, and it’s obviously not working.

Breakfast is usually one of the following:

  1. granola, soy yogurt, and a banana
  2. green monster smoothie – usually spinach, kale, banana, almond butter, almond milk OR spinach, kale, banana, strawberries, tofu, almond milk
  3. granola bar, piece of fruit (this one is reserved for days I’m in a HUGE hurry)
  4. cereal and almond milk (usually one of the kashi kinds)

Lunch is one of these:

  1. veggie wrap – tofurkey, spinach, cucumber, hummus, tomato AND sun chips and a piece of fruit (usually an apple)
  2. soup, fruit, and a granola bar or veggies and hummus
  3. leftovers from dinner (always my personal fave!)

Afternoon snack:

  1. apple (sometimes almond butter)
  2. banana (again, sometimes AB)
  3. kashi bar OR larabar
  4. cereal and almond milk

Dinner varies, but it’s not generally bad. I mean, last night was a grilled veggie burger and veggie kebobs.

After dinner, if I’m hungry or just feel like I haven’t had enough to eat that day, I have another snack, similar to those above, or get into the leftovers from dinner.

I didn’t run last night or tonight (since I didn’t get home until 10:00), but I’ve been aiming for 3-5 nights a week, depending. This week will probably be 4-5. I’ve also been doing a bit of strength, though, admittedly, I don’t really know what I’m doing in that department. That’s a work in progress.

Still, I should be seeing something. Either on the scale or in how my clothes fit. Anything. But it feels like no matter what I do, the end result is almost exactly the same. It feels very… well, I hate to say it, but very not worth it. So, is the juice worth the squeeze?

Yesterday I decided to take an “easy” day. I only ran for about 10 minutes, and then I decided to try out a new game Nate had gotten for the Wii. He got the EA Active game. I have been such a skeptic about using the wii for exercise, but I was pleasantly surprised by this game. I wouldn’t rely on it alone for my working out, but I will definitely have to admit that my thighs were burning by the end of the workout. Still, it left me really looking forward to today’s run. I was a little bit shaken up by that- I looked forward to running. Who would have thought it?!!

I think I’m beginning to really love exercise again. That’s really refreshing for me, because for such a long time, it was such a huge part of who I was, and I feel like I have a long lost friend back. Today’s run was awesome.

  • Time: 33:36 (counting a 5 minute warm up and 2 minute cool down)
  • Avg HR: 151
  • Max HR: 177
  • Calories: 380

I would love to know the distance, but since I don’t have a pedometer or anything, and I’m running on the treadmill, I would have to remember to check the distance before I get off, and I never do. I’ll have to make a mental note to do that tomorrow. Regardless of the mileage, I’m thrilled to be moving again. It’s great to have no more foot or ankle pain, and even though progress is slow, it’s still progress.

I was talking to a friend at work earlier today. She’s our school’s speech teacher, but has recently (within the past year) taken up running. She said something that I really hadn’t thought of, but once she said it, I have to agree. Most sports (or other areas of our lives, for that matter) when you say something that is an accomplishment, the response often includes a touch of competitiveness. For example, when I say that I have a martial arts background (yes, I am a black belt), the immediate response is something related to rank. There’s a level of disregard by many if you are less than a black belt, and amongst black belts, while there is an immediate level of respect, there is often (not always) a comparison amongst styles (my style is better than your style, etc.)

Amongst runners, though, there doesn’t seem to be as much of that. There is a definite level of competitiveness on the track/road, but off the track, there is a camaraderie there. As a beginner to any sport, for many of us, there is a feeling that we are somehow lesser than those who have been in it longer. Instead, when the subject of running came up today (with another runner at the table) I made the comment that I was only able to run 5 minutes or so, and the immediate response was that it starts that way for everyone. There was no lessening of what I was able to do. I was met with encouragement, rather than someone telling me what they were able to do. It made me feel like I was more of a runner, to know that even as little as I am able to do, every runner starts there and it builds. I mean, I knew that, but after feeling for so long like maybe I just wasn’t cut out for running, it’s nice to hear that from someone else.

Then to follow that up with a nice run tonight, it really makes me feel good.

And on top of that, I had a friend ask me this afternoon how much weight I have lost lately. It’s not a significant amount, by any means, but the change has not been a scale change. A few pounds, at most. But when I look at my legs and my tummy, I see a definite change. My legs now have some muscle, and my stomach is beginning to flatten out a bit. Mind you, it’s not a huge change, and I’m shocked that she can see it. I can only tell when I’m wearing shorts or a tighter shirt, and I didn’t wear either of those today. Still, I’ll gladly take any change I can get! Scale or not!

There is a children’s book about a little boy who gets a pair of white shoes, then they get stained all of these different colors, and he keeps singing about them. The authors of the book came to my school earlier this year and performed the song/book for our students. I was going to try to find the song to share, but I can’t find it anywhere.

At any rate, I do like my white shoes.
Picture 141
They are asics GT-2140’s. I have to say that I’ve been a loyal asics wearer since just after high school. I have tried other brands in the store, but never made it out of the store with them if there were also asics available. I once owned a pair of new balance shoes, and at one point just after high school I had a pair of adidas. Both were OK, but I would leave it at that. I guess I’m just incredibly loyal to a brand that has always been good for me.

I just bought this particular pair this afternoon and immediately had to rush downstairs to the treadmill when I got home. The slight bit of pain that I’ve had in my foot was completely gone wearing these. These shoes are AWESOME!!! I did start out my run with some knee pain, but it was gone by about 2 minutes in, so I’m guessing it wasn’t anything major. Hopefully?

  • Time: 30:18
  • Avg HR: 153
  • Max HR: 180
  • Calories: 347

I decided to switch my run up for today, just for variety’s sake. Today I did a 5 minute warm up and cool down, and the rest of the time I alternated running 5 minutes and walking 2.5. It was tough, but I made it a little bit tougher by deciding that I was going to push through the last minute, rather than just coasting. Right as I was at my most tired, I was going to try to power through to the walk break.

I had intentions of doing the Jillian Michaels DVD, but I’m going to skip it for now. Possibly I’ll go back down after dinner for some more punishment, but most likely I’ll just call it quits for the day. I still have to run to the store to get the stuff to grill out tomorrow. Nate is wanting to do burgers on the grill, so I have to go get some veggie burgers, something for him, some veggies for veggie kabobs (I have squash and tomatoes, but I don’t have anything else.. I want mushrooms and zucchini. Maybe even eggplant.), and the toppings for the burgers. I’d also like to get some soy yogurt, but I don’t really want to go to Publix, and that seems to be the only place in the area that carries it.

I don’t know if I’ve said anything about this or not, but I’ve realized that since I started consuming less dairy, my allergies are virtually non-existant. I’ve switched to almond milk, soy yogurt, and soy cheese. Normally, this time of year I’m on both Clarinex and Nasonex, and have been in at least once (sometimes more) for a sinus infection despite the two medicines. This year, I’ve not been to the doctor for any of the above. I don’t have a prescription from this year at all, and my sinuses are perfectly clear. I was so skeptical all of the times I heard something about dairy, but it’s made a world of difference for me.

I think I’m going to run to Publix, whether I want to or not, and then decide when I get back whether to do the DVD or not. I love 3 day weekends.

Wow! That was a kick ass workout for sure! Well, it kicked mine, at least. I had to come straight up here afterwards and blog about it. I’m such a dork.

I have really been trying to work on my running. My speed is horrible, but I am so out of shape that I’m worrying about my endurance first. Today was a 30 minute run/walk, and I did actually pick up the pace from where I have been. Here are the stats below:

  • Time: 36:18
  • In zone: 24:52
  • Avg HR: 154
  • Max HR: 176
  • Calories: 420!!!

It was my toughest workout in a while. I know that for a lot of people it would have been easy, but I keep reminding myself… baby steps. I kept wanting to give up or walk for longer, but I kept telling myself to keep on. “You can do anything for one minute.”

It made me think back to when I was doing my training for my black belt test. We would have to hold really tough stances or hold a side kick for 30 seconds to a minute. During that time, my ex would tell me “you can do anything for 30 seconds……………you can do anything for 15 seconds………………..you can do anything for 5 more seconds.” Keeping that goal in mind made the time pass quicker. I felt like I could rest if I could only hold out for that 5 more seconds. During my run today, I kept telling myself the same thing, and it really helped. I had forgotten the power of breaking it down into chunks. I think that even once I’m up to running for longer times, I will still use that strategy to challenge myself to run faster for portions of my run.

I really wanted to put in a Jillian Michaels DVD after the run, but decided since the run was harder than I had planned, I would put the DVD off until tomorrow. Tomorrow will be a much easier run, even though my overall time will probably be longer.

I have also been considering getting my thyroid checked. I have had several people who have known me for years suggest it. They have watched my weight yo-yo, and then get stuck at the highest point. I have been quite a skeptic about the thyroid thing, simply because I’m much quicker to look for what I’m doing wrong. I have a definite tendency to blame myself, and I want to find a way that I can find something that I can fix. Still, after so many people suggesting it to me, I wonder if I shouldn’t at least rule it out.

More to think about. At any rate, I need to go get in the shower.