Sunday, May 22, 2011

I'm still eating healthy... really healthy, actually. I think even a doctor or nutritionist would be proud, I'm damn near perfect on my intake of healthy and super foods. I've also been active, except for my stint dealing with finals. I've also been building my knee back up.

All in all, my view on weight loss is dramatically different from when I got here. I'm healthier, I look better, but I'm not dramatically smaller. Joe even mentioned that my butt looks completely different; better. I think I'm straying away from controlled, documented weight loss regimens and I'm starting to change my life naturally for the better. I'm findingn those things I enjoy, actually I would say I can't live without them, and I'm doing them as much as possible. I'm about to graduate from college, which will make me busy while giving me more time, strnagely enough. There will be hiking, swimming, running and much more in the near future.

To anyone who reads this, who's interested in weight loss. I would say weight loss is great, and striving for it is great, but being really honest with yourself and every decision you make regarding your food and actions is most important. For me, writing things down, keeping a close eye on every calorie that came in and out of my body just didn't work. It was a system for me to try to cheat at every chance I got. Letting myself just change naturally made me really change. In the past, I would grab chips and salsa because it was technically not too many calories to push me over. Now I grab an apple because I want an apple more. The change has been very nice. I would say do what you love, always. If you love greasy foods and you love being big, keep doing it, happiness is important. If you love how healthy food makes you feel, even if you don't love the food yet, then try to find healthy food that you like. If you love how exercising makes you feel even if you don't like exercising yet, find a way to move around and have fun. Find an activity that really makes you feel great while you do it. Happiness and day to day changes are far more important than an end goal number structure. I'm so happy I found what works for me. I know now that if I were with my family, and they were eating donuts and drinking coca-cola, I wouldn't look at the soda and carbs with longing while I ate something different, I would eat something diffrent because I honestly wanted to. Honest, REAL change is really great.

I currently weigh 144 pounds. That's eleven pounds lighter than when I was in pensacola. It's six pounds lighter than when I started this blog, and it's lower than my lowest point before. I accomlished this when I STOPPED keeping such close track.

Because my views have changed, my posts will be changing. I'll still post foods I like, recipes I've found and recipes I've discovered on my own. I'll still post pictures from hikes, swim times, etc, because it's fun. But the calorie counting and regimens are over. I'm happy now.

Monday, May 2, 2011

my knee again, and dieting focus

So after my last post I'm unhappy to report my knee has been really acting up again. It was really swollen and sore from the first workout on the insanity tapes. Otherwise I felt pretty good. Joe and I decided to stop so I could take care of my knee again. This time, more slowly. Tomorrow I'll be making an appointment with my rheumotologist, and I'll be making a trip to the gym to do some knee exercises and cardio. I stretched it and iced it this morning which helped a lot, and I've been taking ibuprofen to help with the swelling. It does seem slightly better than a couple days ago, so slowly I'll be trying to build it back up again. I do want to see the doctor again though, to see if we can get a diagnosis this time.

So with the puppy keeping me at home and my knee acting up, workout out has been somewhat non existant. I'm currently upping the crate training and I think I'll start walking him soon (the vet said I could but his assistant said she wouldn't risk it. At this point I'm thinking it'll be ok.) so I can get out of the house more. I can still workout when joe's home, but it kind of feels like we're tagging each other into a fight, we don't really go out together right now, and I'm gonna try to fix that.

So because of these restrictions I've been focusing more on my diet. I've decided to post a lot more pictures of what I eat and really talk about my diet, because I know how to diet right and diet healthy, I just choose to overeat and neglect what I know is good for me. I still have the knowledge, and sharing it while tracking my progress is an appealing idea. I'll keep up with it as much as I can, I know I haven't really kept to my word in the past, but hey, I have to keep trying before I succeed right? Anyway, I went to a farmers market this past saturday morning, and I'm very very happy I did. There was so much fresh local food there! It's the tastiest, healthiest reserve of food I've found on the island, and I was so happy. I've felt so much more energized and excited about eating more vegetables because they taste so good! Next time I go I'll have to take pictures.

So I'm still trying, but there's been some life walls that have come up my way, so I gotta figure out how to knock them down. I know I'll get there, one step at a time.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Haven't posted in a while. This is mainly because I've been falling out of my weight loss regimen. One reason for this is an increase in the workload with school, the other is the adoption of Dubstep. My time is precious, AND I usualy can't really leave the house. I don't feel like anyone should ever have an excuse not to be healthy, so I felt bad about lapsing to this degree. My weight went back up to 148 pounds, which goes to show that it's much easier for me to gain weight than lose.

My husband Joe has also wanted to get back into shape (he's already in much better shape than I am) and he wants to get fit so he can play soccer for a sponsored local team he's recently joined. We agreed to buy the workout DVDs known as Insanity. They came in about a week ago and due to his schedule, today was the first day.

I decided this time I'd follow the meal guidelines, which is always something I've been against in the past. My argument was always that I was a foodie, I loved to cook healthy home meals, which is true, and that everything I cook is just as healthy as the quick fix meals they provide in these types of programs. I don't need to buy tomato soup with preservatives because I can make my own and it tastes better, for example. I've also always said that a meal plan pushed the boundaries of how much weight loss can be healthy and make you happy. Many meal plans are low carb, no meat, the caveman diet, or some other unnecessarily restricting system. After looking through the meal book for Insanity, I realized I eat most of these things already. It was all fully balanced meals that have everything, there's pasta and meat and lucky for me lots of fish (which I love.) I do plan on making my own dinners sometimes, I'll just have to watch the portions, because some meals I'm too attached to. I love my brazilian fish stew, which is very very healthy, I love my shakshuka, which is always very very healthy. So I don't see that as a problem. It's really the  middle of the day and the evening when I start to break and snack on food that's bad for me, so this meal plan will help with that.

The workout today was a fitness test which lasted about 25 minutes. It was intense and difficult. The main thing I'm worried about is actually my left knee, which seemed to have some trouble with some of the moves. I called my rheumatologist today to see if I could get some advice since it's been swelling again, but I may have to make an appointment. There's no pain and I can use it, but it's swollen. We'll see what happens.

Anyway I'll try to post a status update about where I am which will have my weight, my measurements, a photo and stuff like that. I'll try to update more regularly from now on.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Food solution

Hello weightloss blog. I haven't been here in a few days. I'm currently at 146.6 pounds, and I think that small bit of loss is due to better eating habits. As far as my workout/diet regimen, it's changed a bit lately. Why? because I got a puppy!

Isn't he adorable? Little border collie, definitely looking forward to all the tricks I'll be able to teach him. Also, he happens to be a huge pain in the ass as well. Well I say that but it's really not so bad. He is the first baby anything I've really taken care of on my own, so my life has been consumed by his needs for the past three days. Luckily he's getting good enough that I'm not really having to give him my undivided attention 24/7 anymore.

The main thing, however, is that I can't leave the house right now. I'm kennel training him, which is going pretty well, but I just can't justify leaving a 2 month old puppy alone. I should wait until I absolutely know he'll be ok.

How does this relate to weight loss? Well I can't run, swim, or do anything outside of my house. This has been a real challenge. I'm not that worried about it since he'll eventually really help me with working out, but also my husband and I will be doing the Insanity dvds very soon. I should be getting them on friday. I want to combine that with my hiking and cardio. Hiking will probably happen on the active rest days.

So, regarding my main issue which is my diet. I've decided to try making meals I've never made before, or experimenting and cooking meals that would be very healthy. I would call them super meals, since they contain a large amount of nutritional value and consist of mostly very healthy food. I want to try this experiment until I reach 100 meals. Each one has to be different. I will include current recipes that I make, but I'll run out of those very quickly. So here's my first meal:

Meal 1. Portabella mushroom with egg baked on top. Sweet tea to drink

It got a little messy, ended up sticking to the foil in the oven. Forgot to oil it :P   Anyway, hope I can keep it up! I'll post more meals today as I make them.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

A little lost

Things are a bit unusual I suppose. I don't even know what week it is, I'll have to check... ok so it's been almost exactly 3 months since I started trying to lose weight, and I've lost about 3 pounds total. "But Lauren," you might exclaim, "I thought you lost 5 pounds!" Yes, I gained two over the last two weeks. It's been a little confusing balancing weight loss with physical fitness. I thought the two would go hand in hand, and weight loss would come with the package of pushing myself physically, but that's not the case. If I hike all morning and eat carbs all afternoon, I'll just even out, I'm not going to lose weight. So, at 147 pounds AGAIN, I have to come to terms with my eating habits. Because I've been pushing myself physically, I've been eating more, so I haven't been losing weight.

On another note, I did achieve a goal today. I decided this morning to run 5 miles. It's been a goal of mine I've been working towards. Recently I ran 2 and felt ok. Instead of easing into it, I decided to try for my goal today and succeeded. There was sweat, panting, a feeling of nauseau, bliss, laughter, frustration, pain and dizziness, but I got through it. My prize was a CamelBak, which I can't wait to use.

I've been wanting one of these for a long time, and now that I hike more, I can actually use it. I was also thinking it was perfect for art supplies, and I can do sketches more easily on hikes.

I feel strange. I'm so much healthier now than I used to be, but I'm still basically the same weight. I can run for 10 minutes are so and not feel any different than walking. I can swim for an hour and not feel tired. I can hike around and be fine for the rest of the day. My cardio and endurance are very strong, but I still have body fat that won't go away. I know it's my diet, but it's so difficult to stay away from carbs when you've burned so much energy throughout the day. I guess if I really want to get thinner and tone up, I'm going to have to adopt some lessons from the caveman diet. I need to rely on protein instead of carbs. Meat, fruit and veggies need to be most of my diet. It'll take a little more effort, but hopefully this next week I can focus on that MORE than the workouts.

Current stats:
147.2 lbs
waist: 39
thigh: 24
bicep: 12

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

image post

this is just for my link cover, image from hiking.

It's been a while, Week 11

I've neglected this blog for a while, but never fear! That's actually a good thing. I've been thinking less about being healthy and just living it, so I've slipped out of the mentality of thinking about week goals and anxiously awaiting the scale. My focus has changed. That doesn't mean I'm out of the goal making business, it just means my goals are different.

I currently weigh 145.2 That brings the weight loss total to 4.8 pounds. I was actually 145 last week, so this .2 pounds could be a fluctuation. I guess we'll see in the weeks to come. Being at the five pound mark is nice, it also makes me realize how much harder it is to shed pounds now. I'm very healthy at this point, so much so that eating healthy and working out isn't even a challenge for me anymore, yet I didn't lose any weight last week. This means I'm plateauing, and I've got to step it up.

So, although i am still focused on weight, I'm more focused on performance. My knee is completely healed (hooray!) and I've been hiking recently, and I love the challenge of being physically capable during a hike, so that hikes are fun, and not as strenuous. This resulted in a thought process of how to get myself to run faster, and longer. This spurred the thought of what I could do to motivate myself to really push hard and go for results rather than calories. It's the same with swimming. Joe gave me the PRT swim quals for women in the navy, and I aim to work my way to an outstanding.

I've decided to make my reward system results based. The first one is a camelbak, something I've wanted for a while, partially because I think they're cool, they're useful, I'm solving more than one problem at once (something to put my mp3 player in) and you know, Aron Ralston has one (yes I'm nerding out a little, but in my defense, seeing his camelbak just reminded me that I've wanted one for a while, it didn't make me want one.) Actually, you'd think that movie would turn me OFF of camelbaks considering he drinks his pee from it. Oh well, I'd still like to have one. Actually my long term goal is to get enough gear to do adventure races and much longer trails (the longest I've found here is 20 miles, although there are lots of 10+ mile trails.) But I can't just go out and buy a camelbak and never use it. So my goal is to run 5 miles without stopping for a break outside. I can jog or go slowly if I want, and of course I'll have water and music and whatever I need, but I have to keep jogging or running for the entire 5 miles. It's the longest distance I'll have run at one time, but I have run 4 miles without stopping before. If I can accomplish it, I'll buy myself a camelbak. The second one is buying a music device for the pool. I really want one of these, and they're not cheap, and possibly unreliable. They make ear buds that work relatively well but sometimes break down, so I may need to replace them. It's a risky purchase. To justify this, I'd like to swim the PRT test and get an eccelent low, which means swimming 500 yards in 10 minutes. No easy feat for me. I generally swim 100 yards in four minutes, meaning I swim 500 yards in 20. I have to cut that time in half, but if I do, I'll treat myself to those headphones, which would make swimming way more fun.

Anyway I'm starting to work towards gear because it makes a huge difference in how much fun you can have exercising. Running just isn't the same without music and I haven't even experienced swimming with  music. It'll be interesting to see what gear I want next, repel rope, a tent and bike? I look forward to exploring everything this island has to offer. I love living somewhere I can hike again, and I'm so thankful to have the use of my left leg again!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Week 7 in review, middle of week 8

On monday at the end of week 7 I gained a pound. This brings me to a total weight loss of 3.2 pounds. I was pretty pissed off about this, and I really haven't been the same since. That week was bad. I didn't workout as much, I ate more than I was before and I was obviously stressed. This week isn't much better. I don't feel like I'm really sticking to my workout regimen. I feel like I keep cutting corners and thinking it's ok. Granted, I have been working out this week so far, and I'm going hiking tomorrow. My calorie burn is better, but my diet isn't as good. It's not that I'm not eating healthy, it's that I'm not eating very often, which results in bigger portion sizes at dinner, and slower metabolism. My schoolwork has been going slower, and my house isn't as clean as it used to be. I'm not sure if I like this new sleep schedule at all. I need to find a way to live with it and still be productive, I can't rely on my evenings to stay up and do work, I really need to hit the ground running in the morning, so I can relax in the evenings. That kind of thing is hard to change though.
I wanted to post after my weight gain just to say, I'm still here, I haven't given up. The physical therapist gave me the go ahead to start running and hiking. I want to mark tomorrow as a new start for me. I want to eat healthy, be neater, be more motivated and disciplined with schoolwork and workout in the mornings. I'll post again tomorrow with an update.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

ending week 7

I haven't posted updates in a few days, and this week has been very difficult for me. I decided to implement another positive habit in the next step to get my life fully functional, and it was waking up at a reasonable time. I decided to start sleeping at 11 and getting up at 7. Although I've been getting closer each day with making this schedule permanent, it's put a strain on my ability to get things done. My days were generally long, and I'd push my schedule back each day. Naturally I have more of a 18 to 20 hour day and I sleep for 9 hours or so when I sleep, so my schedule constantly changes. I decided I wanted to stop this, but the consequence is a much shorter day, and I'm not quite used to it. It's affected my diet and exercise. I haven't worked out very much this week, about 2 days of real workouts and some walking, and no swimming (although I still need new goggles...) and my diet hasn't been the best either. I've been eating more based on mood than on nutritional needs, although today and yesterday were a bit better. I'm a little nervous about my weigh in tomorrow. I just hope I can lose enough to get below 145. I'm worried I won't lose any weight like the week andy was over and we ate pizza during the superbowl. I'll update tomorrow with my weight. I think I'll still try to make this schedule stick, and hopefully I'll get my shit together as time goes by...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Week 6 in review

I lost another 1.2 pounds! Very happy about this, since this week wasn't easy at all. having weight loss with school and everything feels like a great accomplishment for me. This makes 4.2 total, here's to hoping next week I'll get under 145! That'll be exciting. I haven't been that light since the first year I was in Pensacola.

The diets getting easier, and I find I have to make myself think about it so I don't overeat. I'm eating very healthy, but portions are something that require constant thought, so I'm still working on that. Working out regularly isn't so bad either. I enjoy getting a good workout in, it's very satisfying.

so, nothing left to say but on to week 7! If I keep up this weight loss, I'll average over a pound a week in all, including the weeks where things weren't working well, that would feel great. I think in week 7 I want to focus on eating more veggies and less carbs, and pushing my workouts to the next level. I'll post an update :)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A day of food

So I wanted to post a typical day of what I eat. I actually missed taking photos of two of my meals and had to make due. One was Jamba Juice so I just grabbed some stock pics, and the other got photographed when most of it was gone, oh well. Still, I wanted to show what a typical day for lauren is:

Breakfast: Greek yogurt (cherry flavor,) a grapple, two egg whites (from a carton,) and a fourth of an avocado.

After my workout, I stopped at Jamba Juice to get a smoothie for joe. I got myself a MediterreneYUM flatbread and a small all fruit strawberry smoothie. Total calories for this was 470. It's a little higher than usual, but with lots of fruits and veggies, I'm ok with it. BTW, this image actually isn't what I got. Mine didn't have cheese on it.

Some orange juice while making dinner. i was getting pretty hungry. It's from a Dole carton (no preservatives.)

I forgot to take a picture of my plate, so this is the much less pretty version. I baked sausage, potatoes, squash, onions, and mushrooms seasoned with paprika, red peppers, and pepper. It turned out really good. I had one link of sausage cut up and lots of veggies.

Desert. I was doing homework and was feeling out of it. I had some coffee with honey and sugar (watered down Americano style, we were out of milk and my coffee is espresso style) The spoon has peanut butter, a little honey and some dark chocolate, a new favorite desert for me :) I don't have coffee that often but it helps me focus as long as I drink it really slowly. It provides a steady flow of caffeine. I generally only drink coffee when I know I haven't had any caffeine in a few days and it won't make me freak out because I've worked out, which I did today. Now I feel completely normal, the effects of it have worn off.

So that was my day. The general estimate from my calorie app I use is around 1400 calories today. I'm pretty happy the flatbread was the only bread product I ate today. I'm a big carb addict and I've been trying to break myself of the addiction. I eat carbs after working out because it helps me recover and it's a nice reward. It's been tricky eliminating it from dinner, but baking makes that easier.

So I hope this helps someone who happens to see this blog. I know when I first tried to diet, seeing what other people ate helped me. I may do this again sometime and try to take a picture of my plate each time, so you can see the portion size.

Things are going well though, I'll update again when I weight in!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Middle of week 6, fine tuning

I'm doing a little update since it's friday and the weekend is a good chance for me to mess up my diet.

I've been finding that the diet is more challenging than working out. As long as I get myself to the gym, I burn enough calories to be satisfied. I burned about 300 today and most of it was walking, it's really not so hard anymore. I consistantly burn 280 at the pool. My counter is up to 1700 burned in the last 7 days. It's really the eating part that's difficult.

Next time I go to the store I seriously need to stock up on fruits and veggies, I'm running really low and it's affecting how I eat. I burned through the last of the veggies today, all I have are clementines, apples and other fruit left, oh and an avacado. This has led me to eat other things although they aren't bad. I had some whole grain pasta today and with dinner we had rice. It's fine, but I'd like to have the option of having only veggies without carbs, and I didn't really have that option because I was too hungry and there wasn't enough. Breakfast foods are pretty well stocked though, just need a little more milk. I also need to find a new kind of bagel to buy, since mine has high fructose corn syrup in it despite being wheat.

yea, I'm getting to the point where I'm starting to nit pick. My cravings aren't as bad, and I've started really liking my new, whole foods diet but if bad food is available or introduced in my head as a possibility it's a downward spiral. The reason I didn't lose weight last week was because instead of going somewhere healthy, I welcomed the idea of going to california pizza kitchen, and then didn't order something healthy. I agreed to make pizza and wings instead of suggesting a healthier meal, I treated myself to ice cream at cold stone instead of treating myself to frozen yogurt at Menchi's. I'm still in the beginning stages of this change, and I have to be careful about the food that surrounds me. The next grocery trip will definitely be a godsend.

Good news: My knee feels great. I'm really anxious and eager to be able to do things I haven't been able to do since October. I want to hike, run, climb, swim at beaches with strong currents, I want to be able to do Zuzana's workouts on I want to start building up some ass and leg muscles! But it's not there yet, and in fact my therapist said I can't even do yoga yet. it's cardio bike, walking or swimming and that's about it, but I can feel my knee getting stronger. I better do what he says though, I don't want to mess this up.

Also good news, I've discovered the joy of baking. I made a lemon and caper chicken last night and baked a fish and teriyaki veggies tonight. The food's a little bland at the moment, but it'll get there. I'll be introducing a little fattier food for dinner tomorrow: sausage and potatoes, not ideal but it's what we have and I can have fruits and veggies on the side (we still have some all natural frozen veggies.) I think if I make sure to eat whole grains and fresh fruits all day the dinner won't outdo me. I may bake this dish too, but we'll see.

I want to do two things with this blog in the near future. I want to start measuring my waist and posting it, so I can have as accurate a progression gauge as possible, and I want to post photos of every meal I have throughout a day, maybe just for one day, but we'll see. I think if I can see it, it'll help me assess just how healthy I'm eating, and if something comes to this blog, maybe it'll help them lose weight and motivate them.

Overall I feel things are going well, but I'll need to step it up and eat right the next two days to see good results on the scale. I'll post again when I weight in on monday.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

week 6 in review

So I weighed myself this morning and I was still 147 pounds. This makes me realize two things: one, superbowl sunday homemade pizza and wings will indeed fill up my stomach and little more than necessary, and two: I need to start measuring my waist. Also, I didn't workout as much this week. I think all in all that "week 2 syndrome" is a pretty good way of explaining this. I've heard for a while that the second week of a new diet plan can really hit hard and be hard to stick by in the second week. So going into week 7 I need to workout more, which I succeeded in doing today, burning almost 500 calories actually, and I need to watch out for treating myself too often. The pizza was a good treat, but two slices was enough, I had four slices and a few wings, which was too much food. I could have had two slices, a little wine, maybe a little bit of dark chocolate and it would have been way less calories. Lesson learned.

I'm looking a little skinnier. I think when I get down to 140, which should be in about 3 weeks, I'll take another picture of myself. I think the ten pound mark is a good chance for rewards, like a new bathing suite and workout outfit, maybe some home equipment, or maybe if my knee is better, I hiking trip.

My swimming is getting much better. I'm paying much more attention to form than to my breathing now, since I pretty  much have my breathing down. I may have to start swimming for longer periods of time. Actually that's not true. I've been overdoing it a little with swimming, because I don't feel worn out, and I end up doing other things throughout the day, and it makes me eat more and lounge around because I'm tired. I think 30 minutes a day is fine for now, we'll work our way up when I'm not as tired.

I may weigh myself again tomorrow morning, it's possible that the food from sunday was still in my system and that's why I broke even. After a full day of healthy eating and some green tea, that sodium and water weight may dissapear, so we'll see.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

ending week 6

I wanted to give an update although there isn't much to say. I've been sticking to the healthy diet and working out. This last week I think I haven't dieted quite as well as I did last week, and I'm curious to see if I'll see that on the scale. I decided I should probably measure myself since my weight may fluxuate in the future. With my steady workouts, my muscle may begin to build. I've been eating more bread products although most of them are whole grain, but the amount of carbs in my diet has gone up. This may not matter at all, but we'll see. Tomorrow is superbowl sunday. I know my husband and our friend want to do something like make wings and dip. It'll be a challenge keeping it healthy. There's a chicken place here that has healthy rotisserie chicken, and I think we'll be getting some of that. I may be called upon to make pizza and five layer dip, so I'll be looking around for healthy ways of doing that. Pizza can be made healthy.  Making wheat bread from scratch and keeping the toppings traditional (tomato sauce, mozzerella, basil and olive oil) would be the best way, but I'm not sure how my friend will feel about that combination. Wings I won't be eating, there's just too much fat and skin compared to good meat on those, not including the sauce, that it's just not worth it. A dip would be fun to make but a five layer dip will be challenging. I'll have to make my own quac and be very selective about the layers, I'll also probably need to make a huge amount of pita chips, although maybe I'll be the only one eating those.

So speaking of healthy food, this morning I made outmeal from scratch which turned out very good. I used non fat milk, whole grain rolled oats, a banana, blueberries, a little bit of sugar and cinnamon to add to the flavor. I'm not an oatmeal person, so I was apprehensive about the taste but I liked it. I also tried my hand at homemade chai tea, which turned out a little bland. I'll have to experiment with flavors, and definitely let it steep for much longer next time.

for the most part though, I'm just keeping at it, and enjoying the feeling of a new lifestyle. It feels great to be healthy.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Week 5 in review

I am very happy to report that I've lost 3 pounds in the last week! I think I've definitely found what's working for me now. I'm currently at 147 lbs, and I'm feeling really good going into week 6. My goal was to lose 1.3 pounds and I guess my new diet just kickstarted my weightloss. Even though this is week 6, there is a possibility that I'll experience the "week 2 syndrome", since my new diet started last week, but we'll see. I'm pretty happy right now. I'm eating healthy, and not paying attention to calories, and I've gotten great results from it. I've always known that a "common sense" diet would be much better than counting the calories in every food, and I always knew that focusing on health first would naturally bring about the weightloss, but I'm very happy to find the results I was looking for.

If I can get the same results in week 6, I can honestly say that all the measured diets out there are bullshit. All you really need to do is find out what works for you, and what is healthy for you, and eat that. My diet has consisted mainly of fresh foods, fruits and veggies, meats, and a some grains. I don't eat organic, I don't stay away from pasta, I've just cut it down a bit and eaten it in more moderation.

So, there's not much to be said I suppose. I'm not problem solving anymore, I've found what works and I'm going to stick to it. Now, the challenge will be diet and exercise while being in school, since I've started my new semester :) I'll post updates soon!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

An argument about muscle

I want to do a freewrite about a conversation I had with a friend. She's known for a few days that I've been dieting and exercising, and I don't generally divulge my techniques, mainly because dieting and exercising only have one real technique and I didn't think it was relevant. I mentioned that I often visit for inspiration, and even have a picture of Zuzana from the site on my phone. This picture to be specific:

I showed her this image, and she seemed more than a little upset. I won't quote her directly because I don't want to misrepresent her words, but basically she told me this woman looked starved and overworked, and I believe she used the phrase "that's some beefed up dyke shit." At first I felt really angry, and defensive, but I realized it's not that big of a deal, I knew already that not everyone finds muscular women attractive. I do, and I told her this, I told her if I could, I would look like this woman. I know I won't, because my body is different, but I'd love to build some muscle. She seemed even more distressed, and said that Zuzana only had muscle definition because she's cut all fat and sodium from her diet. I argued back that although she eats little fat, her diet and her workouts are very safe and very healthy. I made the arguments that she doesn't take supplements, and even told her about Zuzana's past, which if you aren't familiar with is on her website. My friend didn't believe me, just like I wasn't believing her. I tried to reassure her, but she insisted that she had trained as an athlete and she knew what athletes were supposed to look like. I didn't want to argue, and I valued her concern (although not her comments) so I let it drop.

I feel like this is a common reaction among women to this kind of physique. Yes, I am aware that Zuzana is very unique, but I'm very confused as to the extreme concern for my well being when I am currently killing myself with extra weight. I know very well that it's possible to obsess and under eat, but I'm not that stupid or naive, and I was hurt that someone assumed that about me. I can't get too mad, as I had a sneaking suspicion my friend knew someone who'd gone down a very bad version of this path. But really, I can't look at that picture and think that Zuzana is anything but a pinnacle of health.

my friend tried to tell me what she thought a healthy woman should look like. She mentioned a flat stomach and a healthy amount of curve and fat. I tried to find an image that I found best fit this description:

This is a victoria's secret model, and this company is known for NOT pushing their models to eat less or get unhealthy. This woman is beautiful, thin and has the features mentioned in my discussion with my friend. However, I want muscle. I'm still uncertain as to how the viewpoint started that women can't have this and be healthy. Is it because so many women are stupid enough to go to unnecessary extremes to get what they want? Last time I checked, a woman who said she wanted some definition didn't mean she wanted to be in the strongest woman competition, and really, so what if she did? I understand the concern with bony thin, with starving yourself and taking chemicals you aren't familiar with, but I'm very confused about the fear of muscle.

As far as I know, it's physically impossible to support muscle unless you lead a healthy lifestyle. If you didn't, your body would feed on your own muscle. If you didn't get enough fat and protein, your muscle would break down, so wouldn't a muscular woman suggest that she is extremely healthy?

my friend mentioned jillian michaels, saying that she used her workouts to lose weight when she was my age, suggesting that I do the same.
Is there really a huge difference between this ^ and this:

Really, the only difference is that zuzana is a little more cut, but they're pretty  much the same. This comment made me even more confused, because now I didn't understand why jillian michaels was an appropriate role model, but not zuzana. Perhaps being on television makes it acceptable to be build and cut as a woman. I'm still going to try to build muscle, and I'm eating to support both weight loss and muscle build. I find this to be a very desirable look for a woman, and I guess I just have to accept that not everyone will feel this way. I want to look good and get healthy for me first, and then my husband as a close second. I have to put aside other opinions and just run my race.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Middle of week five

I feel so much better today. I think I had a really good day. I may start posting my food intake daily, it might help me and maybe help someone who's looking at this blog. I swam for 30 minutes, and actually got my freestyle stroke down pretty good. I'm getting much better at it. I find I enjoy how much faster I swim doing that stroke versus other ones. I ate healthy all day as well, and as I said, I'm not counting calories. My food was mostly veggies, some fish, a little rice and some oats in the morning, but overall very balanced and just the way I've been trying to get it. I still have a problem with increasing the size of my meals toward the end of the day, so I'll have to try to stop that... but other than that I'm happy with how today went. I want to do a post about a specific topic, which came up in a discussion with a friend of mine regarding muscle in women and what crosses the line between healthy and detrimental. I may do this tomorrow, I'm going to relax for the moment.

Oh one more thing, if anyone is wondering, the main tools I've been using to track my food and my workouts is from the makers of cardiotrainer on my droid. They have a branch app called weight loss and one called calorific which is free. I use all three, and love them.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A little motivation image for myself :) If anyone stops by this blog, and is interested in weight loss, I would encourage you to check out Zuzana is a great, inspiring workout coach with some fantastic workouts. I used to do these and enjoyed them, unfortunately I can't anymore since her workouts are full body, and my knee is still injured, perhaps permanently so. I do enjoy going to the site just to get in the mood to workout though.

Week four in review, difficulties and new ambition

I haven't posted here in a while I know. I think I had a brief desire to abandon this blog, which is something I often do when things aren't working out. I have another blog on this account that suffered that fate, but will soon be revived for a different purpose. When it comes to weight loss, I have often quit, often wanted that feeling that comes with starting over. The excitement of a new plan, however is not what I should want. I should want what comes after that. And so although it's mentally unappealing, I can't abandon this blog, and instead of always trying to post something positive, I have to admit to my failures.

In week four I wasn't dieting or exercising, in fact I would say I had no plan at all for my weightloss. I gained back the weight I've already lost and then some, bringing my weight to an even 150 lbs. I wasn't writing down what I ate, and I've stopped going to the pool on a regular basis. But yesterday, something woke up. Joe and I had a mild argument about me being messy. He was being somewhat unreasonable, and the stress of his new schedule was coming out, but underlying the exhausted complaints there was truth. I was slipping, and he woke me up. I can't quit like I have before.

So in week five, which is what I'm in the middle of now, my plan is still here but a little modified. I have to figure out what will work for me and I'm very close to having that. I'm only making one change this week, which is a change in the way I track my food. In the past I have counted calories, but since I'm very aware of how few calories are in certain unhealthy foods (certain sodas, cookies and salty snacks) I've been eating an appropriate amount of useless calories. So instead of writing down numbers, I want to track my food with the intention of only eating things I know are nutritious and good for me. Instead of thinking I'm not losing weight because I ate 200 more calories yesterday, for example, I want to instead say that I ate an item that I know is unhealthy, and I can replace that with something healthy. I want a vegetable, fruit and fish heavy diet, and I get discouraged from cooking meals and making complex things because they're difficult to track in calories.

I need to start swimming more. I've started to become slightly embarrassed because I'm getting better, and therefore trying harder in the pool, and sometimes I choke up some water or breathe very heavy when working on my freestyle stroke. I can't quit just because I look silly. I have to stick with this. I also want to incorporate weights and upper body gym cardio into my plan, since I've abandoned those and there's no reason not to get back into them.

I'll post back here, hopefully on a daily basis with updates, and hopefully this is a second wind to my regimen.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Week 3 in review

This week didn't feel good at all, and I gained a pound. My schedule has been rocked since joe has just started work, and his schedule is so unusual. We've had a friend over and we've been making food I don't normally eat, and I've been trying to accomplish things I should have done when we first got here.

HOWEVER, I have reason to believe week four will be better, much better. Since I started this journey I haven't worked out fully in a week yet, and I think I'll be able to this week. Joe works four days on, four days off, switching after his first two day shifts to two nights. It's a really rough schedule for him. I could probably work around his day schedule and get in a swim before the pools close, but who wants to do that when you don't have to, especially when your husband just came home from a 12 hour shift?

The time he has off puts me in a good position, however. He works nights tomorrow and thursday, meaning I can use the car in the daytime and go for a swim. Then he has four days off, making it very easy for me to workout anytime. My goal is to swim four days a week and do yoga once a week. This week, I'll be swimming tomorrow, thursday, friday and saturday. This should help a lot with weight loss, especially since I enjoy lap swimming so much. With my house getting cleaner I've been more motivated to count calories again as well. So I'm optimistic, maybe I can make up for the pound gained by losing two this week. I'll post here again with progress on my plan later this week.

Friday, January 14, 2011

friday of week 3

I haven't posted in a few days, so I figured I should poke my head in and give an update. I've lost 2 pounds so far, and I'm hoping to lose another pound this week, but I haven't been keeping to my regimen like I'd like, and there are some reasons for this.

I was trying to find a good way to workout, and I found one. Swimming in the lap pool is never boring for me, makes the time seem to fly and I feel great afterwards. I have to drive to get to the pool, so I was trying to find out how I was going to work around joe's work schedule. His schedule is going to change soon, and he'll be working four days on, four days off, which is good in one sense, but bad in that he works twelve hour shifts and alternates from days to nights. This makes having a constant regimen impossible. I have to wait a week or two to see how his schedule stays to find out if I want to bring him to work and pick him up, and I have to find out if there's a way for me to swim before he goes to work, which would be crazy since I'd be coming BACK home at 5:30 am. So this is a snag in my plan, and I find at the moment I'm just keeping my eye open for opportunities to go to the pool and taking them when I can get them.

The other problem is the mess in my house at the moment. I'm fighting a losing battle with our dishes, and I just unpacked the rest of them making a bigger pile than before. Having a messy kitchen makes me discouraged to write down what I eat and take the time to make better meals. I am making progress though.

I forget sometimes that this is why I've struggled with my weight. It's not just diet and exercise, it's changing many details of my life, changing my motivation and outlook even in the small areas. I am improving, and I have to focus on that. Weighing in Monday, I'll post back here then.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Week Two in Review

I lost another pound! That's some good news. This week was pretty pathetic, I worked out once, I only counted calories two days and I was stressed for part of the week, it's actually surprising that I lost another pound. I think it's mainly because my new diet habits carried over regardless of whether I was counting. I still want to up my weightloss to two pounds a week, but I'm happy with one pound.

So this week, week 3, I'm going to swim for 30 minutes each weekday, and I already did today. I'm going to try to count calories again, and keep myself around 1200. Basically it's more of the same, and the reason is because I need to get my schedule down, and make this stick. I think changing something or challenging  myself too much will make me stop. This plan will encourage me to keep going.

Also my house is getting cleaner. I finally got through all the kitchenware and I'm almost done with that area, and most of the house is just normal cleaning until I get to the playroom, where I'll need to go through all of my art supplies.

So things are improving, and that's good. I think tonight I'll relax and play WoW or watch some stuff, I feel like an easy day is a nice reward for another pound lost.

I hope week 3 will be just as good as my first two!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Weekend, week two, problem solved continued

It's been a couple days but I'm posting again. Yesterday I went to the doctor and found out my knee has a potentially chronic issue that I'll have to deal with for the rest of my life. I'm getting further tests done and we'll see what they say, but the diagnosis was kind of hard to take in. My whole family has really bad knees and none of them are athletic at all, and I think these are connected. I really want to be not just in shape but athletic, I've been wanted to get back into things I used to love, like soccer and hiking. I was pretty depressed yesterday, and I allowed myself to just feel sad for a while, and then I came to the only decision there was to make, which is that I'm going to do everything I can and work hard to fix my knee as much as I can, and I'm going to be ok with ignoring the pain that comes with it, since the physical therapist has told me that pushing through that discomfort is a good thing. Today I felt much better, and I got back on my diet and I was pretty productive.

I'm still trying to figure out my workout schedule, which depends on the pool hours on base and the bus schedule, as well as the distance of the bus stop from my house. It's pretty hard to figure out, much more complicated than the Bart system. I may call or visit the office and ask them what I can do.

Stats: ate 1283 calories
no workout

I'll try to stick with my diet this weekend since I haven't been working out this week, and hopefully I can knock off another pound. My workouts and my schedule are something I want to focus on keeping consistent next week. I may just have to wait for joe to come home to swim, but we'll see.

Anyway, I haven't given up yet! I'm still trying to make permanent changes, and we'll see if it pays off.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Problems to solve

So I'm going through week two with considerably less motivation than week one. I didn't workout yesterday and haven't worked out yet today, although yesterday was mainly due to reading the last 300 pages of the Count of Monte Cristo, which is a little difficult to put down once you're at the end. Today there really isn't an excuse, and my mindset I think is more on "OMG my house is dirty and I've been ignoring it" and "OMG I need to take out a loan for the spring semester" and "OMG I need to call the maintenance guys about my ice maker and I have a doctors appointment at 8 tomorrow and WAAAH!" So working out just doesn't sound appealing, because I don't feel relaxed enough to be able to do it. I know that sounds really backwards, but unlike most people working out doesn't calm me down in a good way. I usually feel calm enough not to do anything else productive, so sometimes if I want to get a lot done I avoid working out, knowing that it will eliminate the GOOD stress that keeps me going.
What's the point of all this? I think two things need to happen. I need to get my house clean, because it's affecting me seriously now, and I need to get on a sleep schedule that promotes working out. Tomorrow will be a good excuse to start waking up early. To have breakfast and go to my appointment I'll probably need to wake up at 6 or 6:30. that way I have enough time to eat, get ready and leave with a few minutes to spare. I really want this to be something to stick to. I always had trouble keeping a schedule because I could never figure out what was the "correct" time to wake up. Should I wake up with joe? No because his schedule is going to be flipping around all over the place when he starts work. Should I wake up at 6? Possibly but why 6 instead of 7 or 5? Right now the sun rises at 7 am, and this time will gradually get earlier and earlier.

after looking at a sunrise calender, I think I've made a decision. The sun rises at 7:12 on the shortest days, and at just before six on the longest, so waking up at 6:30 means I can wake up with the sun pretty much any time of year. that's a good time to start with. I think waking up with the sun is a good idea too.

To emphasize, I'm not dwelling on my sleep schedule as a distraction, I think setting a specific time to workout is very important to consistency. The next problem is figuring out a transportation situation with Joe. I'd love to swim every morning in the Lap pools on base, but I just don't have a way to get over there. I may be able to figure something out though, Sometimes it's surprising how public transportation can help.

Anyway, I'll post back on here sometime with an update, right now I'm trying to fix the problems with my regimen. Ciao!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Week one in review

So at the end of this week I've lost one pound. At first I was happy, mainly because the weekend and friday I pretty much abandoned any hope of actually dieting, although some of the habits I've adopted carried over, but I really didn't workout like I'd like to. So to see a pound get knocked off the scale was actually nice. Then my head started feeling dissapointed, I started to feel that this was going to be a very slow and very painful race I'm running with myself. After that little period of self loathing I was back to feeling happy with myself.

I know some people look at this blog sometimes, especially those just searching for weight loss tips, so here's a small encouragement. I lost one pound in a week, and at first that seems like nothing. It seems meaningless, like this is a race that can't be won, but don't lose hope. take a look at this:

This is what one pound of fat looks like. this is what I've just eliminated from my body, so it's not a small task, it's actually very difficult. For those of us who are overweight but not obese, weight loss can seem daunting when you see 300 pound people dropping 20 pounds at a time on biggest loser. at 148 pounds now, I have to be ok with losing one or two pounds at a time.

So now we move onto ways to improve. This week was rocky, and I think I can pinpoint some of the problems:
1. Diet. I stopped tracking my food, and most of that was just laziness, which is easy to fix. I also had a lot of bad food in the house, which I've gotten rid of. No more oreos, no more goldfish, no more pie. I have healthy, low calorie deserts stocked in the freezer, lots of healthy snacks around the house and a slightly cleaner kitchen, which is still in progress.
2. going to the gym everyday to move my arms in circles for 30 minutes isn't working for me. After three days of doing it, it's become incredibly boring. The solution? vary up my workouts, and get creative to work around my injury. I can swim, which is probably very good for my knee anyway, and that's something I'll be doing today for my workout. I can do weights and of course do the usual cardio I do. Varying the workouts I think will help me a lot in staying consistent. I won't plan workouts this week, instead I'll shoot to burn at least 300 calories each day, with whatever workout I decide to do.

So onto week two! I'm feeling pretty good about today, so I'm not worried about getting stuff done today, but we'll see if I can stay consistant, and not let my moods and cravings get in the way this time.